Lady Flames Soccer Team Opens Season In Florida

Thursday, September 4, 2014
Never one to go searching for easy early-season victories, coach Matt Yelton will take his Lee women's soccer team into the south Florida region to begin the regular season at Lynn University (Boca Raton) and Barry University (Miami Shores).

After finishing 14-4-2 in their first season against Gulf South Conference (GSC) and NCAA Division II opponents, the Lady Flames will test Lynn on Friday at 7 p.m. The Sunshine State Conference (SSC) foe will be playing at the newly constructed Bobby Campbell Stadium and Lynn will be playing under lights at home for the first time during a home match.
.

Lee will take Saturday off and travel on down to Miami Shores on Sunday to challenge a tradition-rich Barry squad that is ranked third-nationally in one of the NCAA D2 polls. Barry captured D2 national crowns in 1989, 1991 and 1993. Overall the elite program has a record of 355-123-31.

"In the 13 years I've been at Lee, we have never played these teams," said Yelton, who directed his Lady Flames to a record-setting four consecutive NAIA national titles before moving to NCAA play. "This will definitely be a learning experience for us.

"Going on the road early in the season will be an important part of the maturation process for our team," he added. "Lynn and Barry have both historically been some of the top Division II programs and we are looking forward to the challenge of the games." 

After an impressive scrimmage against Georgia College this past weekend, Yelton said he is really pleased with how the team has responded at this point. "We are a young team and we don't have a lot of experience on the squad, but we do have a group of players that are working hard to get better and improve their game.

"It is still very early and while we have played and performed well to this point, it is only a start. If we don't continue to work hard, we won't improve, and with our schedule and the set of challenges in front of us, we just need to stay committed to getting better on a daily basis."

Heading into the Florida games, the staff reports a few minor knocks, but nothing major that should hold anybody out that wasn't already injured coming into preseason.

Yelton feels the keys to victories during the early going are simple: "We have really been focusing on being a very organized team and trying to play to our strengths. If there is one area of the field that we do have experience returning, that would be in our back four and our goalkeeper, so those individuals need to have a good showings for us to come away from the weekend on a good note.

"I also believe that we need to have an up tempo and hard-working mentality. Playing in Florida at this time of year is never easy and the heat and humidity will sap the energy out of a lot of teams—hopefully we can approach the job with the right attitude and not let the weather be a factor.

"For me, it's really more about seeing us realize the things we have worked on in preseason will pay off, and see where we are at in an actual game now. If we come away from the weekend with a couple of good showings that would be great, but I'm really more concerned about the process of this team maturing and becoming a better team over the course of the year."

The Lady Flames departed by bus early Thursday morning and hope to make it down to Florida by Thursday evening. Friday's game will feature live streaming and can be located at LynnFightingKnights.com.

Coach Yelton's team will return to Cleveland and prepare for the home opener against the University of Findlay (Ohio) one week from Friday (7 p.m.) It will mark the annual Kickin' It For Kids With Cancer fundraiser. 

Covenant Women Fall In Overtime To Birmingham Southern

The Covenant women's basketball team rallied from a fourth quarter deficit to force overtime, but visiting Birmingham Southern took over in the extra period for a 70-60 victory over the Scots on Saturday evening inside Barnes PE Center. Emma Grimes led three Covenant (4-2) players in double figure scoring with 16 points, including four 3-pointers. Aleigha Williams added 15 ... (click for more)

John Shearer: Watching Some UNC Tar Heel Basketball – Again

Several days ago, I headed over to Chapel Hill, N.C., to watch the University of North Carolina men’s and women’s basketball teams play for the second December in a row.   While I generally pull for the Tar Heel men’s team, they are only about my third or fourth favorite college basketball team. In fact, I actually pulled hard for Indiana, my favorite team along with my ... (click for more)

Tennessee Members Of Congress Urge President To Approve Federal Disaster Assistance For Tennessee Counties

Members of Tennessee’s Congressional delegation on Saturday urged President Obama to quickly approve Governor Haslam’s request for a major disaster declaration for the State of Tennessee to help five Tennessee counties impacted by wildfires and severe weather in November rebuild and recover. “Governor Bill Haslam has submitted a request for Public Assistance and Individual ... (click for more)

Grohn Says Integrity And Ethics Lacking In Berke Administration

Mayoral candidate Larry Grohn criticized controversies and instability coming from the mayor’s administration as a sign of unethical leadership and a lack of integrity. He said, "These scandals lay out the simple fact that it is time for new leadership which is accountable to the people." Councilman Grohn’s criticism comes after the independent auditor’s release of a memorandum ... (click for more)

New School Funding Ideas

After reading the article “County Schools Prepare To Set Priorities For Next Round Of School Building Funding,” I could not help but think about how helpful it would be to have the millions of taxpayer dollars given the owners of Walnut Common apartments to build some new schools.   In case you did not know, since 2008 our elected officials have given away millions in taxpayer ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: John Glenn’s ‘Hero’

When John Glenn became the first man to orbit earth, the timing was perfect. I was 13 years old at the time, in need of a hero, and I latched on to the astronaut tighter than a tick. All of us boys knew he’d flown 150 missions in fighters in World War II and Korea and, believe me, he was “The Right Stuff” long before the great movie about the Mercy 7 daredevils came out about 30 ... (click for more)