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Motlow State soccer schedule features contests throughout middle Tennessee

July 13, 2017

The Motlow State Community College soccer program has finalized its 2017 schedule, and with an on-campus facility still a year or two away, fans throughout middle Tennessee will have an opportunity to see and support the Lady Bucks at multiple high school and community fields this fall.

Motlow will play a 17-game schedule, with seven of the contests classified as 'home' games. The season will open on Monday, Aug. 21, when the Lady Bucks play their first official soccer match at Raider Academy in Manchester against Georgia Military College.

"The NJCAA allows us to play up to 18 games during the regular season, so we feel good that we were able to schedule 17 our first year," said Andy Lyon, Lady Bucks' head coach. "Obviously, schools have conference schedules they must play, plus natural rivals, so it took some maneuvering to work out dates."

The Lady Bucks will play two home games at Tullahoma's Johnson Lane Recreation Area, and one home game at high school fields in Manchester, Smyrna, Winchester, Fayetteville and Shelbyville. The Lady Bucks will also use the Johnson Lane facility as their official practice location.

"We are very grateful to area high schools for working with us and allowing us to use their fields to play," continued Lyon. "Not only does it give us a place to play, but it also gives us a great opportunity to promote our program throughout Motlow's service area. We also thank the City of Tullahoma, especially Recreation Department Director Kurt Glick, for working with us and allowing us to practice and play some games at Johnson Lane."

Women's soccer is not yet a full Tennessee Community College Athletic Association (TCCAA) conference sport, with only Motlow and Southwest Tennessee Community College planning to compete this fall, so the Lady Bucks will have significant travel challenges to complete a full schedule.

Road games include trips to Meridian, Senatobia and Tupelo in Mississippi as well as Cuthbert, Georgia. Junior colleges and community colleges in Kentucky and Alabama don't play women's soccer, forcing Motlow to look further for quality opponents. However, a number of TCCAA schools have indicated they are considering adding the sport in the future.

Area fans will get an early opportunity to see the Lady Bucks in action when Motlow hosts Jones County Community College for a scrimmage on Monday, Aug. 14, at 2 p.m. at the Johnson Lane complex in Tullahoma. Jones County ended last season ranked No. 11 in the nation by the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA).

Motlow's baseball, softball, and basketball teams compete in Region VII of the NJCAA along with nine other community colleges in Tennessee. Together they form the TCCAA. It takes at least five schools from the state competing in any sport for the TCCAA to recognize the sport officially.

With only Motlow and Southwest Tennessee scheduled to begin women's soccer this fall, the Lady Bucks are forced to compete in another district. The NJCAA decides which district that will be, and they have placed Motlow in District H, which consists of Region VIII from Florida and Region XXIII from Mississippi.

NJCAA bylaws say the Lady Bucks must play 60% of their contests against junior college competition, and they must win at least 50% of those games to be eligible to compete in the postseason. With 12 of Motlow's 17 scheduled games being against JUCO teams, the Lady Bucks will qualify if they can win six of those games. If Motlow does qualify for the postseason, it will play in Melbourne, Florida, against other qualifying teams from District H in early November.

Motlow Soccer
The Motlow State Lady Bucks will open the 2017 soccer season, the school's first, when they host Georgia Military College on Monday, Aug. 21, at 2:30 p.m. at the Coffee County soccer field behind the Raider Academy. Among those suiting up for Motlow and the high schools they played at are, from left: Kayla Moultry, Siegel; Shelby Grow, Lebanon; Kinsli Houck, Stewarts Creek; Lena Alakabi, Stewarts Creek; and Emily Bryant, Smyrna.