RIDGELAND --- The No. 14 Holmes Community College Lady Bulldogs and the No. 3 Tyler Junior College Apache Ladies are set to do battle at 6 p.m. Saturday in the 2019 NJCAA Gulf South District Championship at Freedom Ridge Park in Ridgeland.
The Lady Bulldogs, 18-2 overall, are coming into the district championship after winning the Mississippi Association of Community and Junior Colleges State Championship, 3-1, over Itawamba and the Region XXIII Championship over LSU-Eunice, 1-0, while the Apache Ladies, 17-1 overall, are coming into the tournament after capturing the Region 14 championship with a win over Navarro, 2-0. Holmes is No. 11 in the United Soccer Coaches poll while Tyler is No. 3.
The state and region titles were the first for the Lady Bulldogs. Prior to the postseason, Holmes captured its fourth straight North Division championship. Tyler won their 9th Region title and have made four straight appearances in the NJCAA National Tournament winning the national championship in 2017.
The Lady Bulldogs have the NJCAA's No. 2 goal scorer in freshman forward Cariel Ellis of Madison. Ellis has scored 47 goals on the season and has 16 assists. Ellis is third in the NJCAA in points with 110 and 12th in assists with 16. Sophomore forward Zoe Ellis of Brandon is 13th in goals scored with 23 and 14th in points with 57. Freshman midfielder Mackenzie Thompson of Pelahatchie is third in assists in the NJCAA with 26.
As a team, Holmes leads the NJCAA in shots (615), shots on goal (375) and corner kicks (149). The Lady Bulldogs have scored 117 goals putting them in second place in goals scored. Holmes is third in shots per game (29.3) and in assists (100).
In goal, freshman Carly Williams of Flowood has 87 saves and has a record of 16-2. She has given up 14 goals in 1215 minutes played.
Holmes' coaching staff includes: Matt Convertino, Head Coach; Wesley Noble, Associate Head Coach; Ousmane Coulibaly, Assistant Coach; Humberto Pelaez, Goalkeeper Coach; Jaylon Robinson, Volunteer Assistant Coach; and Keith Comish, Athletic Trainer.
Tyler's Patricia Estupinan of Canary, Spain leads the Apache Ladies in goals with 21 and points with 52. Mukamara Abdulai of Tamale, Ghana is second in goals with 19 and is second in points with 26. Vicki Adams has 12 goals and 10 assists with 34 points on the season.
As a team, Tyler is seventh in the NJCAA in goals scored with 99, 15th in shots (357), 14th in shots on goal (236), eighth in assists (84), and 34th in corner kicks (66).
In goal, Sydney Malmstrom of Whitehouse, Texas, has 36 saves and has a record of 17-1 overall. She has given up seven goals in 1170 minutes played.
Tyler's coaching staff includes: Corey Rose, Head Coach; Kati Tamanaha, Assistant Coach; and Rodrigo Rocha, Student Assistant.
Admission to the match is $7. Holmes faculty, staff and students are admitted free with their ID and the cost for Tyler students with ID is $3. Any High school and club soccer players wearing their team jersey will also be admitted free.
The match can be watched live at holmesccmedia.com/white-channel. You can follow along with updates on the Holmes Athletics Twitter account at holmesathletics.