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Davis gives full attention to girls program

Jeremy Davis knew he was doing the soccer programs at Fort Smith Southside an injustice by trying to coach both the boys and girls teams at the same time.

The former Arkansas kicker pulled double duty at his alma mater for three years, but realized that the programs needed more attention than he had time to give. So last season he made the decision to coach just the girls program, and the results are pretty evident.

The Mavericks are 12-4 this season and 9-0 in the 7A-Central heading into Tuesday night's big home match against Bryant. Southside has already clinched a berth in the 7A state tournament, scheduled for mid-May in Rogers.

"I just didn't feel like coaching both that I could give either team what they needed, the attention they needed," Davis said. "I just felt like my time was torn and it would be better to focus on just one team at a time. I felt like it was in the best interest of the program to pick one or the other."

So Davis picked the girls team, which won 17 matches last season and advanced to the 7A quarterfinals before losing to Bentonville. This season the Mavericks have been even better.

"We've been playing really well," Davis said. "We played some tough opponents and I feel like we've been real consistent. We don't have a big superstar scorer, but we've been balanced."

The loss of Nancy Mendoza, who signed with UCA, from last season's team has been tough to fill, Davis said, but several players have stepped in to fill the void. Kelly Carson has put together a solid season with 20 goals, and several others have contributed to the scoring. Kyla Crawford and Rachel Smith have been consistent.

"Losing Mendoza was tough, but our back line has really come together and we've been really solid there," Davis said.

Keeper Melanie Rice has been solid in goal for Southside. She's been instrumental in overtime wins against Conway and Bryant when the matches went to penalty kicks.

Davis said Bryant will be a tough matchup Tuesday.

"The last time we played them they had a player who was injured and she missed a couple of matches," Davis said. "They had to make some adjustments and it took them a couple of matches to get it figured out, and now they are back to being the Bryant they were before, which is a really good team."

Bryant (6-3) defeated Southside 2-1 in tournament play earlier in the season, then Southside returned the favor in conference play.


Panthers pounded at home by Cyclones

Russellville's boys soccer team seems to have Siloam Springs' number when the two teams play on the Panthers' home field.

The Cyclones became the first team to score on Siloam Springs during 5A/6A District 1 play, and Russellville rolled to a 4-1 victory to spoil Senior Night last Friday at Panther Stadium.

Russellville also defeated the Panthers 4-0 in last year's game in Siloam Springs, for a combined 8-1 in the last two meetings.

"They've had success against us here for some reason," said Siloam Springs coach Brent Crenshaw. "Last year they were really all over us, but I thought tonight's score wasn't really a reflection of the game. They were better than us tonight, but we created some chances. We just couldn't finish them and they did."

The loss snapped a six-game winning streak for Siloam Springs (10-5-3, 5-3) and five-game stretch of not being scored on.

"I still think they're still one of the best teams in the state at the end of the day," Crenshaw said. "You just can't bring it every night. It wasn't our night, so we'll go back and try again."

Earlier in the week the Panthers blanked Greenwood 2-0. Christian Marroquin scored a first half goal off an Eli Jackson assist for the Panthers, while Danny Daugherty found the back of the net in the second half.

The Panthers were set to host Harrison at 4 p.m. Monday in a makeup game from the April 13 match that was postponed. Siloam Springs then plays at Dardanelle on Tuesday and wraps up regular season play at Clarksville on Thursday.

Preps Basketball on 04/24/2018


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