The Lees-McRae College Bobcats men's soccer team has been rewarded for its strong start to the 2006 campaign with a national ranking of #13 in the newest National Soccer Coaches Association of America/Adidas Coaches Poll.
After winning their season opener 4-1 over Francis Marion University, the Bobcats tied #22 UNC-Pembroke 1-1; both on home field to start the year 1-0-1. The Bobcats took their undefeated record on the road to the Laker Shootout hosted by Clayton State. The Lakers, ranked number eight in the country at the time, came out flying scoring a 2-0 lead just over twenty minutes. The Bobcats battled back to score a 3-2 upset win over the Lakers, controlling the majority of the game after their lackluster start. A day later, the Bobcats continued their momentum from a day earlier, trouncing North Georgia 4-1, to improve their record to 3-0-1, earning them their highest national ranking in program history. Sophomore Berin Boracic (Orlando, FL) leads the team in scoring with five goals and an assist in four games.
"It's a great reward for the boys considering how hard they have worked since pre-season began back in August. We need to continue playing with the passion and desire we have exhibited thus far. However, our work is not finished yet, it's still early in the season. That being said, myself and the coaching staff will be much happier should we be ranked this high with two weeks remaining in the season, as opposed to two weeks into it," commented Head Coach Chris Whalley after learning the news that the Bobcats were now the 13th ranked team in Division II.
The 13th ranked Bobcats will look to continue their winning ways when they host 4th ranked Lander University on Thursday on Tate Field at 6:30p.m. The game had originally been scheduled for Wednesday evening, but has been postponed one day due to the heavy rain fall of Tropical Storm Ernesto. Lander is ranked number one in the southeast region while the Bobcats hold down the number two spot.