Monday, October 30, 2017

UIS men and women’s soccer ready for postseason

Sunday’s first-round Great Lakes Valley Conference Women’s Soccer Championship Tournament game between Quincy and University of Illinois Springfield isn’t your typical No. 1 seed vs. No. 8 seed matchup.

The Prairie Stars are seeded eighth, but they had nationally ranked Quincy on the ropes last weekend.

UIS took a 2-0 lead until Quincy cut the deficit in half less than a minute later.

Quincy, No. 12 in the NCAA Division II rankings, avoided the upset by scoring two goals on handball penalties in the final four minutes and won 3-2.

“We take away a lot of confidence from that game,” UIS women’s soccer coach Erin Egolf said. “We competed really well. Our girls challenged for every 50-50 ball. More importantly, when we had the ball we kept possession. We had a consistent effort that first 86 minutes. We just had some unlucky calls."

The UIS women’s and men’s soccer teams are both making history.

Each has qualified for the GLVC tournament for the very first time.

UIS joined the conference in 2009.

The Stars will play Lewis on Sunday in the first round of the GLVC Men’s Soccer Championship Tournament. The game starts at 2:30 p.m. in Romeoville.

"We’re confident,” UIS men’s soccer coach Adam Hall said. “We’ve beat Lewis already, so we know what we can do. We just need to get the job done when we get the chance on Sunday.”

The Stars have a chance to make more history. If they can get a ninth victory, they’ll break the program record for wins in the single season in the NCAA Division II era.

Both teams are eager to show what they can do in tournament play. “We know going in we should be able to compete,” Egolf said. “Now we’ve got to just show up and do it. Our team is finally seeing that we can be good and we can be a top team.”

This article appeared in The State Journal-Register on October 27, 2017.

Read the entire article online.