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Wednesday, September 30, 2009When Lipscomb soccer coach Charles Morrow looks at the season, he actually sees four separate seasons _ preseason, non-conference, conference and postseason.
The Bisons will open the third season when Campbell, the 2008 Atlantic Sun regular season champion, visits the Lipscomb Soccer Complex Thursday night at 7. The game has been billed by the conference as the A-Sun “Game of the Week”.
The Bisons are 3-5-1 overall. Campbell is 1-6-0. Campbell won 4-3 in Buies Creek, N.C., last season with a combined five goals scored in the second half.
Campbell leads the overall series 5-1-0 with Lipsomb. Last season Campbell started out 2-5 before winning the next 12 games including all nine A-Sun games.
“There is new life,” said Morrow. “We talk at the end of each season and self-evaluate where we are as a team.
“It is not like the talent isn’t there. I think this is something we can rebound from. I feel good that we have at identified issues and talked about them. The guys know where they stand. It is important to get off on the right foot.”
Morrow doesn’t expect the Bisons to simply become a better team because they are starting conference play. But he still believes in the talent of his team.
“I think our out of conference play was a complete failure,” said Morrow. “We had that discussion at the end of our game with Wofford Sunday. We did some things well, but overall we were not happy with where we were at the end of it.
“The consistency wasn’t there. The quality wasn’t there. We have not been as organized in the back. I think it has been a big wake up for the guys for sure. And I think they will respond.”
One of the major losses has been the absence of defender Kezi Lara. He is out indefinitely.
“Some of the guys bring parts of the game the Kezi doesn’t bring,” said Morrow. “I don’t want to go into this first A-Sun weekend without a player. We have to be able to play without him.
“The first 25 minutes against Furman Friday we played really well and had them on their heels. When Kezi left the game it changed. We haven’t really changed personnel on the back row. We are just going to have to play differently.”
Offensively, the Bisons have had their share of opportunities. Garrett McLaughlin leads the conference in shots with 30 followed by Andrew Chamberlain in second with 26 and Garret Pettis in third with 25. Miguel DaSilva is tied for eighth with 17.
Pettis leads the conference in shots per game with 4.17.
Morrow expects Campbell’s Camels to give the Bisons all the challenges they can handle.
“They are always pretty well organized,” said Morrow. “In the past they have been very good going forward. I know they will be a skillful team.
“This will be a good opportunity for some other guys to step up for us. We will be better because of some of the adjustments we have made. They should give us more flexibility in the future and hopefully we will be better for it.”