CORPUS CHRISTI – The Texas A&M-Corpus Christi women's soccer team embarks on its final road trip of the regular season this weekend, as it will take on Sam Houston State and Houston Baptist. The Islanders face SHSU in Huntsville on Friday at 7 p.m. before facing HBU on Sunday at 1.
These are the final two games of a four-game road trip for A&M-Corpus Christi. With only four games remaining, the Islanders are nine points out of sixth place. The top six teams in the standings advance to the 2013 Southland Conference Championship.
The Bearkats are one of the teams the Islanders are trying to catch for that final playoff spot, so Friday night's affair will be a crucial one. SHSU is 6-8-1 overall with a 4-4-0 mark in league play so far this season. The Bearkats have wins over Lamar, Incarnate Word, McNeese State and Central Arkansas to their credit this conference season. They are coming off a dramatic weekend that included a 1-0 win over UCA and a heartbreaking overtime defeat at the hands of Oral Roberts.
Mariah Titus leads the squad with six goals and 13 points on the season, while Shannon Shields (4 goals), Jacey Hamilton (3) and Tricia Mallory (3) all have found the back of the net multiple times this season. The Bearkats have surrendered just 20 goals this season in 15 games, thanks in part to strong keeping by Kylie Hambleton (1.35 goals-against average, .822 save percentage).
HBU sits just ahead of the Islanders in the standings with a 3-5-0 mark in conference action and a 4-10-1 record overall. The Huskies have garnered wins over Lamar (1-0), McNeese State (3-0) and Incarnate Word (2-1). HBU has rebounded well after starting 1-7-1 this season.
The Huskies have struggled to find the back of the net this year, scoring a total of 10 goals in 15 contests. Rebekah Tovar and Molly Missimer have each found the back of the net three times this season to lead the squad. The defense has been a strong point for HBU, surrendering just 1.10 goals per game on the year. Patty Walrath has been a stalwart, posting a 1.13 goals-against average to go along with an .840 save percentage, with most of her action coming in conference play.
The Islanders are coming off a tough loss last weekend, as they were edged by Abilene Christian, 2-1, last Friday. Kallyn Redona scored her first career goal in the defeat. It marked the sixth time this year that A&M-Corpus Christi has fallen by a score of 2-1.
Yvette Franco continues to lead the Islanders' offense with her eight goals and three assists, while Alyssa Miller has contributed three goals of her own. Meghan Cordero has also chipped in a goal and three assists on the year. In net, senior Audrey Baldwin has been nothing short of sensational, turning aside 107 shots, the ninth-best total in the nation.