Release courtesy of Mark DeCotis, Eastern Florida State College
MELBOURNE, Fla. (November 4, 2014) - For the fourth straight season, but the first on its home field, Eastern Florida State College’s women’s soccer team is playing for the right to advance to the NJCAA Women’s Division I National Championship Tournament.
EFSC is 2-1 in District H finals since the women's soccer program was created, losing at Darton State College of Georgia in 2011 and winning at Pearl River Community College and Jones County Junior College, both in Mississippi, in 2012 and 2013 respectively.
The victories earned EFSC trips to the national tournament where it finished as runner-up in 2012 and was eliminated in the first round in 2013.
So with EFSC hosting the national tournament on its Melbourne Campus again this season head coach Jeff Carr and his players want nothing more than to be participants.
To accomplish that they’ll have to defeat Pearl River which comes calling at 6 p.m. Saturday on the Melbourne Campus. Admission is free.
EFSC heads into Saturday with an 11-1 record and two top-four national rankings. Mississippi state champion Pearl River is 9-4-2.
But records are meaningless at this point in the postseason, Carr said.
“Everybody is back at 0-0 as far as I’m concerned,” he said. “It’s a one-game season now. Pearl River certainly is not coming all this way just to show up. They upset Jones County to get here and we certainly expect them to give us one heck of a challenge."
Saturday’s game doubles as Sophomore Night with recognition for EFSC second-year players captain, midfielder Jamie Perriello, center back Samantha Solis and defender Stephanie Martin.
Perriello has 10 goals including game winners against Navarro College and Polk State College, the latter earning EFSC its fourth straight postseason berth. Solis has a goal and an assist but more importantly has anchored the Titans backline that has allowed just eight goals.
Martin, who has provided valuable minutes off the bench, also has a goal.
Freshman midfielder Abbie Camargo leads in points with 28 thanks to her seven goals and school-record 14 assists. Her twin sister and midfield partner Bri missed seven midseason games due to a foot injury but has eight goals and four assists.
Fifteen players have scored for EFSC this season. EFSC has scored 45 goals.
EFSC freshmen Asmara Holmes and Denise Rodriguez have split the playing time in goal. Holmes has played 702 minutes in 12 games allowing seven goals and recording 35 saves. Rodriguez has played 375 minutes in eight games allowing one goal and making 14 saves.
Pearl River has scored 28 goals while allowing 12.
The national tournament will be held Nov. 17-22. Twelve teams will compete. Pool play will be conducted Nov. 17-19 with semifinals on Nov. 21 and the championship game on Nov. 22.
Iowa Western Community College is the defending champion and has already qualified along with Prima Community College of Tucson, Arizona, Darton State and Owens Community College of Findlay, Ohio.