The LSU soccer team puts its three-game unbeaten streak on the line Friday night while continuing an eight-game homestand welcoming McNeese State to the LSU Soccer Stadium for 7 p.m. game

Admission to LSU’s home matches this season is free, compliments of The Advocate.

Friday’s match is the ninth meeting in the series. LSU (3-3-1) has posted a 7-1 mark against McNeese State (4-4-0).

The Tigers pitched a 2-0 shutout against the Cowgirls at the LSU Soccer Stadium last season.

The Tigers enter the match following a 2-0-1 week, capped by a 1-1 draw with 13th-ranked Pepperdine on Sunday.

McNeese State has won its last two matches with a 1-0 shutout of Prairie View A&M on Sept. 9 and a 2-0 shutout of Louisiana-Lafayette on Sunday.

It will be “Gold Night” and “Mike’s Kids Club Night” at the LSU Soccer Stadium as fans are encouraged to wear gold. The first 500 fans will receive a gold headband at the front gate. Fans are also asked to join the team on the field for an autograph session following the match.

Friday also marks the start of the 2011 SEC Together We CAN Food & Donation Drive as fans are asked to bring canned foods and other donations to matches being held at the LSU Soccer Stadium over the next three weekends as the campaign will continue through Sunday, Oct. 2.

As part of the fifth annual SEC Together We CAN Food Drive, all 12 member institutions will team up in a league-wide food and donation drive in support of local food banks and shelters across the Southeast.The canned goods and financial donations collected by the LSU Student-Athlete Advisory Committee for the next 17 days will benefit the Greater Baton Rouge Food Bank.


LSU TRAVELS TO OLE MISS FOR SEC OPENER: LSU heads into the final leg of an eight-match road swing and begins Southeastern Conference play Friday at Ole Miss.

First serve is 7 p.m. at the Gillom Center.

The Tigers (7-3, 0-0 SEC) dropped a pair of decisions to Xavier and Western Kentucky to wrap up their nonconference slate.

It marked the first time since the 2008 season LSU has had back-to-back losses.

Ole Miss (4-4) secured a trio of home victories over Arkansas-Little Rock, Central Arkansas and Northwestern at the Magnolia Invitational last weekend.

Amanda Philpot, reigning SEC Offensive Player of the Week, has been an all-around threat, posting 8.24 assists, 2.79 digs 1.69 kills and 0.55 blocks per set. She turned in a triple-double with 10 kills, 33 assists and 20 digs against Northwestern.

LSU is led by Desiree Elliott, Madie Jones and Michele Williams on the offensive end. The trio has accounted for 62.6 percent of the team’s offense en route to averaging over 3.00 kills per set apiece.

Women’s tennis

LSU OPENS SEASON WITH PAIR OF TOURNAMENTS: The LSU women’s tennis team opens the season Friday as part of the team travels to the Gopher Invitational in Minneapolis, Minn., and another part travels to the Racquet Club Collegiate Invitational in Midland, Texas.

Rebecca Bodine, Paige Bahnsen, Hayley Everett and Kaitlin Burns will travel to Minneapolis, with head coach Tony Minnis while Whitney Wolf, Olivia Howlett, Ariel Morton and Yvette Vlaar will be led by assistant coach Lisa Jackson in Midland.

Wolf was ranked No. 52 in the initial 2011 Intercollegiate Tennis Association preseason rankings and is seeded first in the Racquet Club Collegiate Invitational.

Wolf has 49 career wins, including 14 career victories against nationally ranked opponents. She finished last season ranked fourth in the ITA southern region.


FORMER LSU FIRST BASEMAN MATT CLARK NAMED TO USA BASEBALL WORLD CUP/PAN AM TEAM: In Durham, N.C., former LSU first baseman Matt Clark was named to the 2011 USA Baseball World Cup/Pan Am Team on Thursday.

The squad will compete in the IBAF Baseball World Cup in Panama City, Panama, Oct. 2-15, and the Pan American Games in Lagos de Moreno, Mexico, Oct. 20-25.

The U.S. roster features 24 players not currently on Major League Baseball 40-man rosters.

Clark played in left field this season for the Tucson Padres, the San Diego Padres’ Triple-A affiliate. He batted .292 (135-for-462) with 24 doubles, one triple, 23 home runs and 83 RBIs.

Clark led the NCAA with 28 home runs in 2008, his only season at LSU. The Fontana, Calif. native played two seasons at Riverside Community College prior to joining the LSU squad.

Clark batted .344 for the Tigers in ’08 with 17 doubles, 28 homers and 64 RBI. He helped lead LSU to the College World Series, earning SEC all-tournament honors and NCAA Regional all-tournament recognition. He was also named to the SEC Academic Honor Roll.

Clark was the Padres’ 12th round selection in the 2008 MLB draft.