Soccer advances to Southland finals
LAKE CHARLES, La. – Kimmy Albeno scored two goals to lead the Lamar Lady Cardinals to a 3-1 win over Southeastern Louisiana in the semifinals of the Southland Conference Women’s Soccer Tournament on Friday night.
Kristin Bos also scored for Lamar, which advanced to the tournament finals for the first time in the six-year history of the LU program. The Lady Cardinals (11-8-1), who are the tournament’s No. 2 seed, will meet top-seeded Stephen F. Austin at 1 p.m. Sunday at McNeese State for the tourney title. The tournament champion receives an automatic bid into the NCAA Tournament.
“I’m very proud of the girls,” Lamar coach Orlando Cervantes said. “They will be ready to play on Sunday.”
Albeno gave the Lady Cardinals a 2-0 lead before the game was 16 minutes old, beating first-team all-conference goalkeeper Lacey Bockhaus at the 4:25 and 15:34 marks.
“I came out really, really pumped up,” Albeno said. “I had some good opportunities and was able to score on them.”
Southeastern Louisiana, the No. 3 seed, got back into the contest when Kerry McWhirter’s shot eluded Lamar goalkeeper Bailey Fontenot with 26:27 remaining in the first half.
“We let down a little bit after that goal,” Cervantes said. “But we picked it up after halftime.”
Bos scored her goal with 18:01 remaining to give the Lady Cardinals their two-goal cushion back.
Fontenot made three saves for Lamar, while Bockhaus made seven saves for Southeastern Louisiana.
Stephen F. Austin advanced to the finals with a 2-1 win over Oral Roberts in Friday’s other semifinal. Stephen F. Austin is 6-0 against Lamar all-time, including a 3-1 win over the Lady Cardinals earlier this season.
“We really need to be focused and on our game,” Bos said. “We will be ready because we are looking at winning the tournament and going to the NCAAs.”