Lamar to Face UCLA in First Round of NCAA Tournament

first_imgLU (16-6, 10-1 SLC) is riding a 12-match win streak after three victories at last week’s conference championship, outscoring opponents 14-4. Redshirt junior forward Esther Okoronkwo, the league’s Newcomer of the Year, was named the tournament MVP after netting six goals and assisting on another to lead the way with a record-setting 13 points. This marks Lamar’s second NCAA Tournament appearance, while the Bruins are set to appear in their 23rd tournament. The Cardinals look to follow up on a hard-fought 1-0 loss to Texas A&M in their tournament debut in 2017. For the second time in the last three years, Lamar claimed both the regular-season and tournament titles, rewriting the record book left and right along the way. Just in the Southland tournament, Lamar matched or broke eight league records: single-game goals (six); total team goals (14); total team points (38); individual single-game goals (4, Esther Okoronkwo); individual single-game points (8, Esther Okoronkwo); individual total points (13); individual single-game assists (2, Lucy Ashworth) and individual total assists (4, Lucy Ashworth). The Cardinals set or tied seven conference records: team goals (69); team points (196); team assists (58); individual single-season goals (25, Esther Okoronkwo), individual game-winning goals (8, Esther Okoronkwo); individual single-season points (60, Esther Okoronkwo) and individual single-season assists (17). She was joined on the all-tournament squad by teammates Lucy Ashworth, Madison Ledet and Macie McFarland. Ashworth tallied a tournament-record four assists and scored three of her own.  Ledet registered a pair of assists and McFarland played all but seven minutes on the back line for the Cardinals. The winner of Friday’s match will advance to the round of 32 and face the winner of Clemson and Vanderbilt at a site to be determined. #SouthlandStrong NCAA Tournament First Round NotesFRISCO, Texas – Flying high after a run through the Southland Conference Soccer Tournament, the Lamar Cardinals are matched up with No. 2 seed UCLA in the first round of the NCAA Division I Women’s Soccer Championship at 8 p.m. CT Friday in Los Angeles. The Bruins (14-4-1, 8-3 Pac-12) finished as the runner-up in the Pac-12 standings, second only to the nation’s top team, Stanford. UCLA posted an 8-4-1 record against tournament teams, including wins over the other three seeded teams in the Bruins’ and Cardinals’ quadrant. In addition to Newcomer of the Year, the Cardinals accounted for the Southland’s Player of the Year (Ashworth) and Coach of the Year (Steve Holeman), along with a league-high eight all-conference selections. Ashworth, Okoronkwo, Anna Loftus and Juana Plata were all first-team honorees.last_img read more