Lady Lions clinch third seed in SLC tournament

The Lady Lions continued their string of shutouts, now four, as they fought for Southland Conference (SLC) tournament position.
Southeastern (11-6-1, 5-2-1 SLC) completed their regular season schedule on a four-game win streak, with 11 seniors celebrating their last home game as a Lion. The 2-0 shutout against Northwestern State (6-11-1, 1-6-1 SLC) was the 50th win for the senior class, one shy of tying the current school record.
“We kinda struggled in the first half because we were nervous,” said senior goalkeeper Lacey Bockhaus. “It took us a couple of minutes to get out of that mind-set, but once we got in there and scored, we did not stop.”
The first goal was scored in the 28th minute, a curling shot by freshman forward Kayla Vera, her fifth goal of the season. The Lady Lions would secure their lead with a second goal by junior midfielder Kelsey Salcido in the 41st minute that was assisted by senior midfielder Dana Songe.
“All of us are out here to play soccer, not to lollygag around,” said Bockhaus. “This is our job. We’re trying to go as far as we can and push it.”
Defense has been key during the four-game win streak. Along with Bockhaus in goal, the defense has marked well, clearing anything that may cause problems for the senior goalkeeper.
“We did a real good job,” said Salcido. “Our defense was really good. We kept them from scoring and everyone played really strong.”
The Lady Lions have seen marked improvement since the midseason dip in form, where they lost three of four matches, including a 5-0 defeat away to regular season champions Stephen F. Austin.
“We definitely picked it up,” said Salcido. “Midseason, we were a little slow trying to find our system, but towards the end, we connected better and played better.”
With the end of another regular season, Bockhaus looked to the future of Lady Lions soccer and mentioned several returning players that will have a larger role in keeping their winning ways.
“I’m looking forward to keeping up with Southeastern Athletics, especially soccer,” said Bockhaus. “You just have a good core group of girls, returning sophomores, freshman and transfers that are all ready to play.”
With the win, the Lady Lions have secured the third seed in the SLC Tournament.  They will play tournament hosts McNeese State on Thursday, Nov. 1 at 7 p.m.
“It was a collective effort,” said Hornbuckle. “I think the seniors contributed greatly in today’s win. We’re pleased to at least lock up the third seed for the conference tournament. I think it was an overall great day for our program.”