BATON ROUGE -- Southern University soccer head coach Jeremy Fontenot announced the Jaguars' 2019 schedule which features eight home matches at Jaguar Park.
The Jaguars will begin the 2019 campaign with three straight road games, kicking off the season August 23rd in Lake Charles, against the McNeese State Cowgirls, followed by a trip on August 30th to Nacogdoches, Texas to face Stephen F. Austin. Southern will conclude their 3-game road trip in Lafayette versus Louisiana on September 5.
Southern will follow-up their road trip playing four straight home games starting with the 2019 home opener against Huston-Tillotson, followed by Troy, Nicholls, and ULM.
The Jaguars will face Troy for the first time in program history.
"We like the feel of the first three games," said head coach Jeremy Fontenot, he continued to say "it will give us a test on our conditioning and hopefully we can get a W [win]."
The Jaguars will open up the Southwestern Athletic Conference slate with three straight matches on the road starting with Howard on September 29 in Birmingham, Alabama. Southern will play Alabama A&M, Alabama State, UAPB, Grambling State, and Jackson State on the road and will face Texas Southern, Prairie View A&M, Mississippi Valley State, and Alcorn State at Jaguar Park.
Southern returns 13 upperclassmen, the 2018 Louisiana freshman of the year and SWAC goalkeeper of the year Chioma Eriken a Mesquite, Texas native. Last season the Jaguars freshmen class recorded a combined 48 starts, led by Glenn Heights native Faith Sparks, and Washington D.C. native Miamour Mesa with 12 and 10 starts respectively.
The Jags will have six newcomers that signed this past fall, in addition to Akousa Allen returning to the squad after a year of rehabbing and the six newcomers Brynn Hill from Dallas, Texas; Aniya Clark, Mesquite, Texas; Cordney Armstrong from Moreno Valley, California; Love' Tovar from El Paso, Texas, Surya Nero from Magnolia, Texas are the 2019 freshman class. Alayna Gray from Winterset, Iowa, Josline Sorto from Dallas, Texas and Tempest Shepherd from Horn Lake, Mississippi will join the Jaguars as JUCO transfers.
Brynn Hill - Dallas, Texas
Brynn Hill a 5’3” Striker from Dallas, Texas. While preparing for college Ms. Hill attended Bishop Dunne High School where she was a four-year starter. In her Junior year, she was named District MVP and in her senior year, she was named team captain, played club Soccer for Cadence FC and Arsenal SC.
Highlight: Brynn’s best soccer moment was during her 1st district varsity game against Prestonwood Christian Academy, where she scored 4 of the 5 team goals in their 5-2 victory.
Why Southern: The reason Hill chose Southern was the amazing chemistry and family like atmosphere. She also said the women’s soccer team embraced her when she came to visit and she admires the high academic standards the university offers.
Coach’s comments: Ms. Brynn brings versatility
Aniya Clark - Mesquite, Texas
Aniya Clark a 5’4” Striker from Mesquite, Texas. While preparing for college Ms. Clark attended Dr. John Horn High School where she was a three-year starter. During her first year, she received newcomer of the year award. She made the first team all-district, academic all-district her third year and was named the ultimate player of the year during her senior year.
Highlight: When she got her first header goal at the beginning of her senior season. It was a corner kick from a teammate. She wanted a goal so she moved around in the box patiently waiting for the ball to be crossed. Once it was crossed she ran full speed at the ball and pushed her head forward towards the ball. All her hard work of practicing header goals paid off.
Why Southern: Ms. Clark believes that it will feel at home and this environment will suit her very well.
Coach’s Comments: Ms. Clark will bring zest to the team attacking force and will settle-in well with the Jags. She will perform both on and off the field with her academic background playing a key role for her.
Cordney Armstrong - Moreno Valley, California
Cordney Armstrong a 5’7” outside-back from Moreno Valley, California. While preparing for college Ms. Armstrong attended Valley View High School where she was a starter for three years. Ms. Armstrong was a scholar student, earned the team overall MVP and made first team all-league.
Highlight: It was the last regular season game of club soccer of her senior career. The coach told her to take a free kick which was outside the 18-yard box near the corner. She thought in her head to make a cross and hope that a teammate could put the ball in the back of the net. The coach shouted shoot for goal, and she aimed and she scored. The team advance with a 2-1 victory.
Why Southern: Ms. Armstrong has family ties to Louisiana and she wanted to have
Coach’s Comments: Ms. Armstrong is a strong individual that will help with the building of the defense and she will bring enthusiasm to the team, that will help shape the defense.
Love' Tovar - El Paso, Texas
Love’ Tovar a 5’5” Defender/attacking winger from El Paso, Texas. While preparing for college Ms. Tovar attended Del Valle High School where she started every game of her high school career. Ms. Tovar has been exceptional in her high school career where she received ten individual awards. These awards comprised of 1st team defender, defensive MVP, forward honorable mention, offensive MVP, all-state Academic Team and Defensive Player of the year. Tovar also was the starting
Highlight: Ms. Tovar’s best soccer highlight story was when she played against Eastlake High school with her high school team. The game was tied 1-1 and the pressure was on, with the game in the second half with 7 minutes left in regulation. A foul was called and Ms. Tovar’s team received a free kick right outside the box. She gave herself a pep talk “it's going in”, she heard the whistle blew, then took the shot right over the goalie and in the back of the net. Everyone came rushing with such amazement and that was the winning goal of the day to help the team advance to the next stage of the competition.
Why Southern: Ms. Tovar describes the community as beautiful, everyone was very welcoming when she visited. She feels the school is the right fit to continue her academic and athletic career.
Coach’s Comments: Ms. Tovar will bring the ability to withstand the rigors of collegiate competition in a competitive environment. She has been in multiple tournaments while at the senior level in high school.
Surya Nero - Magnolia, Texas
Surya Nero a 5’7” Striker from Magnolia, Texas. While preparing for college Ms. Nero attended Magnolia High School where she made 40 starts in four years of playing varsity soccer. During her time at Magnolia she was honorable mention in 2017, First team all-district in 2018, offensive player of the year, team captain and first team all-district in 2019.
Highlight: Ms. Nero’s best soccer highlight was when she got moved to play a defensive position for the second half of their playoff game. While defending around half field, her teammate received the ball down the sideline and as she broke free, she started a sprint towards the box. As she crossed the ball across the face of the goal, Ms. Nero broke away from her defender to slide into the goal and score the goal.
Why Southern: Ms. Nero said that the campus was welcoming and she wanted to attend
Coach’s Comments: Ms. Nero will bring additional strength in the attacking force. She will have the passion to win and will work non-stop to get it done.
Alayna Gray - Winterest, Iowa
Alayna Gray a 5”9” Goalkeeper from Winterset, Iowa. During her Junior College career, she started 6 games as a freshman and 14 during her sophomore year at Iowa Central Community College. Ms. Gray has had 8 shutouts and 95 saves while in the frame of the goal for Iowa Central Community College.
Highlight: Ms. Gray best soccer highlight was at a state qualifying match. The game had ended and it was up to penalty shots to decide the winner. It was the 5th kicker versus Ms. Gray and she stepped up and made the save. Her team advance with her heroic save that day.
Why Southern: Ms. Gray said the team is like a family and it would be a great fit for her.
Coach’s Comments: Ms. Gray will bring her level of experience playing at the college level. She has played in a competitive environment and is ready to be a Jaguar.