MSU Soccer Roundup: Big Wins! - KAUZ-TV: Newschannel 6 Now | Wichita Falls, TX

MSU Soccer Roundup: Big Wins!

MEN'S SOCCER: #4 Midwestern dusts off Buffs, 2-0

No. 4 Midwestern State was all about keeping streaks alive Sunday afternoon as the Mustangs rolled rival West Texas A&M 2-0 in the regular season finale at the MSU Soccer Field.

Most importantly, the Mustangs extended their most current unbeaten streak to seven matches to most likely clinch its sixth consecutive NCAA Division II postseason berth.

"The streak is alive," MSU coach Doug Elder said. "The game was a little heated and it got a little nippy out there, but we're happy to be back in the playoffs."

The NCAA Division II Men's Soccer Championship will be announced Monday night at 6 p.m. via a live video stream on NCAA.com.

The win also extended the Mustangs home field unbeaten streak to 41 matches dating back to the 2007 regular season finale.

Midwestern struck first in the 23rd minute when junior forward David Freeland trapped a cross from Chris Dwyer and whipped a shot past West Texas A&M goalkeeper Carlos Ruiz for a 1-0 lead.

The Mustangs held serve for the remainder of the half, then pushed the advantage to two goals in the 56th minute when Sam Broadbent and Freeland worked a combination on the right wing for a centering pass to Nathan Fitzgerald, who buried his second tally of the season.

Senior goalkeeper Michael Wood made two saves to notch his sixth shutout of the season.

West Texas A&M closes the season with a 7-7-3 mark.

WOMEN'S SOCCER: Mustangs take down unbeaten ACU to claim LSC title

Grit, toughness, guts and the ability to persevere. Those are unarguable ingredients of a champion.

And all were on display - again - for Midwestern State Sunday afternoon in the Lone Star Conference Championship at The Wildcat Soccer Pitch.

For the second time in the tournament, the Mustangs netted two goals in the final 15 minutes to upend No. 2 Abilene Christian 2-1 to claim the program's third LSC title and first since 1998.

"I knew we had the talent and girls that fought," MSU coach Jeff Trimble said. "This is a pleasant surprise that they are finding ways to finish their opportunities and come from behind."

The Mustangs (13-5-2) faced a similar situation in Friday's semifinal round trailing West Texas A&M by a goal six minutes to play before pulling out a 2-1 overtime result.

Abilene Christian, who claimed wins in both of the regular season matches, struck the first blow when LSC Offensive Player of the Year Andrea Carpenter broke behind the MSU defense to give the Wildcats a 1-0 lead in the 50th minute on a counter-attack.

"We stepped up to go to the ball and got flat," Trimble said. "You just can't make that mistake against Andrea."

Down a goal, Midwestern made tactical adjustments moving a player from the back to the midfield.

The immediate results were a bit shaky as Abilene Christian was able to challenge the Mustangs' three-back alignment, but goalkeeper Mallory Whitworth, who made seven saves, helped MSU stay within a goal to buy to adjust.

"We weathered three great opportunities with three in the back," Trimble said. "When we were able to dodge those bullets, we gained confidence to go at them."

The Mustangs finally broke through in the 76th minute when senior forward Kelsey Hill headed in the equalizer off of a diagonal pass from Heidi Avila.

The score wouldn't take long.

Three minutes later sophomore forward Mickey Brown settled Lindsay Pritchard two-hop cross to the back post for her third goal of the season.

"There were people around her, but didn't contest," Trimble said. "Mickey was very composed and was able to put the ball in the net. It was a nice finish."

The Mustangs dodged an ACU penalty kick chance in the 81st minute and Whitworth saved another shot on goal in the 88th minute to preserve the championship.

"This means a lot to the program," Trimble said. "Last year, we always felt pressure to make the NCAAs and to break that ground and we accomplished that with the regular season championship. But for this program and these girls this year, we learned a lot through our struggles. That's what I'm most proud of."

Hill was named the LSC Championship MVP and was joined on the all-tournament team by Whitworth, Pritchard, junior defender Hanna Staley and senior defender Heidi Avila.

With the championship, Midwestern State claims the league's automatic qualification into the 2011 NCAA Division II playoffs. The pairings will be announced Monday night at 6 p.m. via a live video stream on NCAA.com.

Abilene Christian dropped to 18-1-1 on the season.

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