NEW ORLEANS (SBC) –Western Kentucky University claimed its first Sun Belt Conference women's soccer championship since the 2007 season and captured the No.1 seed for the upcoming Sun Belt Championship.
WKU (8-5-5, 6-2-0 SBC) closed out the season with a non-conference 0-0 tie to Evansville as they look forward to the SBC tournament which begins play on Nov. 6 at the Texas State's Bobcat Soccer Complex in San Marcos, Texas.
The Lady Toppers will face the UALR Trojans (4-13-0, 1-7-0 SBC) in the tournament's first round on Wednesday, November 6 at 4 p.m. (CT). WKU is 1-1 all-time as the tournament's top seed.
WKU and head coach Jason Neidell are seeking their first-ever SBC tournament title as they have finished as the runner-up twice (2008 and 2011).
South Alabama earned the tournament's No. 2 overall seed after defeating UL-Monroe on Sunday. The win by the Jaguars gave USA 16 points tying them with UL-Lafayette who entered Sunday with 15 points. The Cajuns tied Troy giving them 16 points as well.
USA (12-5-2, 5-2-1 SBC) defeated the Cajuns head-to-head on Thursday, thus giving the Jaguars the tiebreak and No. 2 seed.
The Jags enter the tournament riding the wave of back-to-back wins as they will be seeking their first win in the tournament since 2005 - a year in which they finished as the runner-up. USA's 12 wins in 2013 equaled the program's highest total since the 2011 season.
Graham Winkworth and his Jags will face seventh-seeded Georgia State (6-9-1, 4-4-0 SBC) on Wednesday at 10 a.m. USA defeated the Panthers on Oct. 10, 2-1.
The UL-Lafayette Ragin' Cajuns are the tournament's No. 3 seed after closing out the season against Troy. The No. 3 seed for the Cajuns is the highest ever seed for Scot Weiland's program and their five wins in SBC play match the single-season best by the program in school history.
The Cajuns will face sixth-seeded Arkansas State (9-6-2, 4-4-0 SBC) on Wednesday at 1 p.m. This is the first tournament appearance by the Cajuns since the 2010 season.
Texas State claimed the league's fourth overall seed after a weekend sweep of both UALR and Arkansas State, shutting out both opponents. The Bobcats will be hosting the SBC tournament for the first time as a member of the conference, as this is the first year of conference play for the team from San Marcos. The Bobcats are 5-2-1 at home this season.
Kat Conner and her Bobcats will play host to No. 5 Troy on Wednesday in the final match of day one at 7 p.m. Texas State and Troy each finished the season with 13 points but the Bobcats defeated Troy earlier this season to earn the tiebreak.
ASU and GSU were tied with 12 points apiece in the standings at the end of the regular season. The Red Wolves defeated the Panthers 3-2 in overtime on Oct. 20 to give ASU the higher seed in the tournament.
The eighth and final seed to be determined on Sunday was the UALR Trojans. UALR's regular season was finished on Friday as the Trojans had to wait out the final matches on Sunday. The Trojans and UL-Monroe, which lost to USA Sunday, both finished with three points apiece in the league standings. UALR earned the bid to the tournament as the Trojans defeated the Warhawks 1-0 on Oct. 13.
Sun Belt Conference soccer action begins on Wednesday, Nov. 6 with four first round matches. Action will take a break on Thursday and will resume on Friday, Nov. 8 with two semifinal matches.
The two championship participants will have an off day on Saturday before playing the 2013 SBC Soccer Championship at 1 p.m. on Sunday, Nov. 10. Sunday's championship match will be televised live for the first time in league history and will be broadcast on the Sun Belt Network.
All games can be watched live on www.sunbeltsports.org. The web stream for the entire tournament is provided at no charge.
2013 Sun Belt Conference Soccer Tournament Seeds
1. WKU (8-5-5, 6-2-0 SBC [18 pts])
2. South Alabama (12-5-2, 5-2-1 SBC [16 pts]) &
3. UL-Lafayette (8-6-3, 5-2-1 SBC [16 pts])
4. Texas State (7-8-2, 4-3-1 SBC [13 pts]) ^
5. Troy (8-9-1, 4-3-1 SBC [13 pts])
6. Arkansas State (9-7-2, 4-4-0 SBC [12 pts]) #
7. Georgia State (6-9-1, 4-4-0 SBC [12 pts])
8. UALR (4-13-0, 1-7-0 SBC [3 pts]) @
2013 Sun Belt Conference Soccer Tournament Schedule of Events
Wednesday, November 6
MATCH 1 - 10 a.m. CT – No. 7 Georgia State vs. No. 2 South Alabama
MATCH 2 - 1 p.m. CT – No. 6 Arkansas State vs. No. 3 UL-Lafayette
MATCH 3 - 4 p.m. CT – No. 8 UALR vs. No. 1 WKU
MATCH 4 - 7 p.m. CT – No. 5 Troy vs. No. 4 Texas State
Friday, November 8
MATCH 5 - 4 p.m. CT - Game 1 Winner vs. Game 2 Winner
MATCH 6 - 7 p.m. CT - Game 3 Winner vs. Game 4 Winner
Championship Sunday, November 10
MATCH 7 - 1 p.m. CT - Game 5 Winner vs. Game 6 Winner (Broadcast Live on Sun Belt Network)
All times central
* - Texas State, as host, elected to play the 7:00 pm match on Day 1. The bracket was then altered to protect the integrity of all matchups as the tournament progresses.