STARKVILLE, Miss. - Mississippi State turned in a stellar effort in Monday's 3-0 exhibition win against Samford. Now the Bulldogs look to carry the momentum into the regular season as the team opens the 2011 soccer campaign Sunday against Arkansas State in Jonesboro. Kickoff for the match is set for 2 p.m. at the ASU Soccer Complex.
The Bulldogs out-shot Samford 23-9, with junior Jasmine Simmons scoring a pair of goals to go along with the winning strike from sophomore Elisabeth Sullivan.
Sullivan returns to the attack for eighth-year head coach Neil Macdonald after leading MSU with 17 points on six goals and five assists as a rookie in 2010.
The Memphis, Tenn., native paces a Bulldog attack that returns 68 percent of the scoring from 2010. Captains Kim Pettit and Madison McKee aim to continue their success from 2010. Pettit, a senior from Madison, scored a career-best 10 points on five goals, while McKee, a Clinton junior, also notched a personal high with seven points (three goals, one assist).
Simmons tied McKee in points last season, scoring twice and assisting on three more goals over 1,559 minutes.
While the offense continuously pressured the Samford attack, the Mississippi State defense stood tall in the shutout. Redshirt junior goalkeeper Skylar Rosson, who enters the season third in career saves per game, stopped four shots to record the blank sheet.
Mississippi State, winner of four-straight season openers, meets an Arkansas State squad that returns nine starters from the 2010 squad that went 7-11-1.
Michele Clark returns to lead the Red Wolves after scoring 14 points on six goals and two assists a year ago.
Megan Stoltzfus paces the goalkeepers after stopping 56 shots and posting a 1.44 goals-against average in 2010.