STARKVILLE, Miss. - The Mississippi State soccer team returns to the road this weekend for meetings with SEC Eastern Division leaders South Carolina and 10th-ranked Florida.
The Bulldogs meet the Gamecocks Friday night at 6 p.m. CST before trekking to Gainesville to face the Gators at noon CST on Sunday. This weekend's matches are MSU's first of the season against teams from the conference's Eastern Division.
State brings a 5-8-0 record into the season and is still seeking its first conference victory of the year after dropping decisions to Alabama and Auburn a week ago. The Gamecocks sit five points behind SEC East leader Florida with an 8-2-3 record and 2-1-1 league mark. The Gators hold a 9-2-1 record, including a perfect 4-0 SEC tally.
Head coach Neil Macdonald's squad ventures to Columbia looking to take the advantage in a series that has been played to a 4-4-1 tie. The two squads played to a scoreless tie last season in Starkville, but the Gamecocks hold a slim 3-2 edge against State inside Eugene Stone Stadium. UF holds an 8-1 lead in its series history with the Bulldogs, with MSU's lone win coming in Starkville during the 2003 season.
Junior goalkeeper Taryn Holland stopped nine shots in holding USC scoreless a year ago, and she enters this weekend looking to notch her fourth blank sheet of the season. The Franklin, Tenn., native stopped 20 shots last weekend, including a career-best 13 against Alabama. She now has 230 saves for her career, moving her into second place in school history.
Offensively, the Bulldogs look to get back on track after being held scoreless the past three matches. Senior Kevyn Shelledy and freshmen Tarah Henderson and Taylor Turnipseed continue to pace MState in scoring with three goals each. Shelledy, a Tomball, Texas, native; sophomore Leanna Baldner of Meridian; and senior Anna Goblirsch of Elizabethtown, Ky., hold the team assist lead with two apiece.
STARKVILLE, Miss. - With two fall tournaments already behind them, the Mississippi State women's tennis team returns to action this weekend (Oct. 10-12) at the Ole Miss Fall Classic in Oxford.
Joining the Lady Bulldogs at the three-day event will be Southeastern Conference teams Ole Miss and Arkansas, while squads from Arkansas State, Jacksonville State, Louisiana-Lafayette, Memphis, South Alabama, Tennessee-Chattanooga, and defending Division II national champion Armstrong Atlantic State also join the field of 10.
The action is scheduled to begin at 9 a.m. CT on Friday and Saturday, and 10:30 a.m. CT on Sunday. The event will consist of four singles flights along with two flights of doubles.
Playing in singles for MSU will be freshman Natalia Mayuk, junior Valeriya Makarycheva, sophomore Elizabeth Hall and freshman Jordan Zachary. Mayuk will be playing in the top flight for the Lady Bulldogs thanks in large part to her impressive performances in the opening fall tournaments. The freshman newcomer is 5-1 through the first two events and has won three consecutive singles matches.
In doubles play, Mayuk will be paired with Makarycheva for the first time this fall, while Hall and Zachary will be paired together for the third time this fall campaign.
Following this weekend's tournament at Ole Miss, the Lady Netters will return to action in two weeks at the ITA Southern Region Indoor Championships (Oct. 24-27).