Lafayette, LA (11/1/06) - The North Texas soccer team begins its quest for a third straight Sun Belt Conference Tournament Championship and bid to the NCAA Tournament tonight at 7 pm. The Mean Green’s road to the title begins with a battle against the host school, Louisiana-Lafayette. North Texas has beaten the Cajuns once this season, 2-0 in Lafayette.
North Texas enters the SBC Tournament as the third seed and opens against Louisiana-Lafayette in the first round for the second straight year. The Mean Green’s record in the conference tournament has been remarkable throughout the years. North Texas has a six-game tournament winning streak, has made the finals of every Sun Belt Conference Tournament since the start of the league in 2000, and holds an overall record of 14-4 in tournament play. If North Texas wins, they will face the winner of the Middle Tennessee-South Alabama match in the semifinals on Thursday. The championship game is on Saturday at 1 p.m.
North Texas is a perfect 6-0 in the first round of the SBC Tournament. The Mean Green has outscored it opening round opponents 27-5 in six games. This is also the third straight year that North Texas will have to face the host school in the tournament.
The Mean Green dispatched of Louisiana-Lafayette earlier in the season 2-0 in Lafayette. In that game North Texas scored two second half goals and had four saves from Kandice Ellis to pick up the win. The two teams met last season in the opening round of the SBC Tournament, resulting in a 3-2 win for North Texas. The series between the two school is lopsided to say the least, with the Mean Green owning a a perfect 8-0 record against the Cajuns. In Lafayette, NT is 5-0, having outscored the Cajuns 12-2. Louisiana-Lafayette is 3-2-3 at home this season.
North Texas enters the SBC Tournament having lost two-straight games for only the second time this season. The Mean Green has not had a three-game losing streak since the 2002 season. North Texas went into last years SBC Tournament after being shutout in its final game only to capture the championship.
Regardless of the final game against Denver, North Texas has set a school record for wins in a conference season with nine. The previous high of eight, set last season, has been eclipsed as NT raced through the first nine conference games perfect at 9-0.
All seven games of the 2006 Johnny Carino’s Sun Belt Soccer Tournament will be available live on the Sun Belt website, www.sunbeltsports.org. The tournament may be viewed live via web streaming at a cost of $9.95.
Click here to visit the Sun Belt Conference Soccer Championship Central