Women’s soccer set to host ASUN tourney after late-season surge

Women’s soccer set to host ASUN tourney after late-season surge

NASHVILLE, Tenn.- The Lipscomb women’s soccer team will be sleeping in their own beds when the ASUN conference tournament rolls around on Nov. 3. That’s because the Bisons clinched the No. 1 seed after reeling off four straight conference victories in the first two-and-a-half weeks of October – including a 1-0 win at No. 25 Florida Gulf Coast on Oct. 17. Senior Ellen Lundy scored on a penalty kick to knock off the Eagles, who topped Lipscomb in both the 2015 and 2016 ASUN conference title games. “It’s been a long time coming,” Lipscomb coach Kevin O’Brien said. “We’ve lost to (FGCU) in the last two conference championships, so if I had [to list] a nemesis, they would be ours. Our players were really fired up for that game.” Lundy has been the key cog for Lipscomb and she leads the team with seven goals – four of which have been game-winning tallies. “What makes [Lundy] so incredible is that she’s got no ego,” O’Brien said. “If you ask her to play in the back, she’s plays in the back with everyone’s she’s got. If you ask her to play up front, she’ll play up front with everything she’s got. She the epitome of a team player.” In addition to the FGCU win, Lipscomb defeated NJIT, North Florida, Jacksonville and USC Upstate in conference play. The Bisons will get a first-round bye for their efforts and will play the winner of the Kennesaw State-North Florida game on Nov. 3. “It’s huge,” O’Brien said of the bye. “We’ve got some players that are worn down and injured, so they’ll have some extra...
UPSET ALERT: Men’s soccer shocks Kentucky

UPSET ALERT: Men’s soccer shocks Kentucky

LEXINGTON, Ky.- The Lipscomb men’s soccer team is peaking at the right time and continuing to find ways to win. After victories over Memphis, North Florida and Evansville, the Bisons (9-6) extended their winning streak to four games with a 3-2 stunner at Kentucky on Saturday night. Logan Paynter got Lipscomb on the board by freezing the Kentucky keeper with a chip shot that lofted its way into the back of the net. The Wildcats (7-5-2) answered with a Leon Jones goal 10 minutes later, but the Bisons countered with a tally by senior forward Ivan Sakou in the 36th minute. Lipscomb led 2-1 at the halftime break. In the 59th minute, Kentucky knotted the game at two when Noah Hutchins scored on a volley from the far post. The Bisons were not to be outdone. Lipscomb junior Ryan Birchfield deposited a shot into the net just one minute later to take a 3-2 lead. Several saves by Lipscomb goalie Christopher Zappia preserved the advantage and the eventual upset victory over the Wildcats. Kentucky was ranked fifth in the Southeast Regional poll heading into the contest. Lipscomb will look to continue its winning ways when it takes on UAB in Birmingham on Tuesday. The Bisons will then wrap their 2017 regular season by hosting Jacksonville next Saturday, Oct. 28. Highlight of Paynter’s goal Photo courtesy of Lipscomb...
Men’s soccer downs Evansville, hits home stretch of regular season

Men’s soccer downs Evansville, hits home stretch of regular season

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – There was a point in early October when the Lipscomb men’s soccer team had to do some serious soul-searching. Over an eleven day stretch beginning Sept. 27, the Bisons lost three consecutive ASUN conference matches by a combined score of 5-1. However, Lipscomb (8-6) has since reeled off three straight wins, including a 4-2 victory over Evansville on Wednesday evening. “We hit a stretch where we were in a funk,” junior forward Logan Paynter said. “We were struggling to get things together, but now we’re back on track and starting to roll.” Freshman forward Ihaia Delaney scored a goal in the first half, and Paynter, Ivan Alvarado and Bennie Harris each found the back of the net in the second half to power the Bisons past the Aces. “The credit goes to the guys,” coach Charles Morrow said. “They have the mentality of keeping their head down and working hard and the goals will come.” The Bisons have had their fair share of ups and downs throughout the 2017 season. The graduation of goalkeeper Micah Bledsoe left big shoes to fill in the net, while Lipscomb has been inconsistent on the attacking side of the ball. Redshirt junior goalie Christopher Zappia has made 56 saves in his first year as a full-time starter, and Morrow said Zappia has continued to show improvement as the season has progressed. “He’s done well,” Morrow said of the goalkeeper. “I think that there’s been some speed bumps along the way. Down the stretch, he’s made all the saves he needed to make . . . that’s all you can ask...
Fleming’s long basketball journey leads to eligibility at Lipscomb

Fleming’s long basketball journey leads to eligibility at Lipscomb

Stability would not be a term used to describe the basketball career of Andrew Fleming. The 6-foot-6 guard has experienced constant changes of scenery throughout the last four seasons of his career in Nashville. The former Ensworth High School star has finally found a permanent home back in the Music City as a member of Lipscomb’s 2017-18 basketball team. Fleming was declared eligible by the NCAA last week, allowing him to fully participate in all games this season. “I just found out (last Tuesday),” Fleming said. “I kept the faith and I am so thankful for all of the opportunities I have been given.” Fleming announced his decision to transfer from Chattanooga to Lipscomb via Twitter in early May. “I love it here and I’ve been through a lot, so I’m glad Coach (Alexander) took a chance on me,” Fleming said. “Faith and values are also very important to me and that made Lipscomb a nice fit.” Fleming first gained notoriety at Ensworth, where he amassed 1,117 points in three seasons and was named TSSAA DII-AA Mr. Basketball in 2014. For his senior season, Fleming transferred to Oak Hill Academy, a prestigious prep basketball school in Wilson, Virginia. The school has produced numerous NBA stars including Kevin Durant, Rajon Rondo and Michael Beasley. Oak Hill allowed Fleming to showcase his talents to college recruiters. He took full advantage of the opportunity by hitting 72 three pointers and leading his team to a 47-1 season record and a runner-up finish in the Dick’s Nationals Tournament at Madison Square Garden. Iowa, Auburn, Florida, Memphis, Nebraska and UNLV were just a few...
Women’s soccer looking for consistency as critical weekend approaches

Women’s soccer looking for consistency as critical weekend approaches

The Lipscomb’s women’s soccer team went through a gauntlet of a non-conference schedule that included losses to Auburn, Georgia, Kentucky and Vanderbilt. With ASUN conference play now in full swing, the Lady Bisons are trying to find their footing against fellow mid-major squads. Head coach Kevin O’Brien admits he was hoping for more success against the powers of the SEC, yet he believes his team is better for its early-season struggles. “Last year, we played four SEC teams and beat two of them,” O’Brien said. “It’s kind of a gamble to have those teams on your schedule, but regardless of the outcome, the tough matches provided great preparation for our conference schedule.” Lipscomb (4-5-3) opened its ASUN slate with a 3-0 victory at NJIT on Sept. 23, before its match with Florida Gulf Coast was rained out on Sept. 29. The Lady Bisons battled Stetson to a 1-1 draw last Sunday. “It was a positive result, although I’m disappointed that we gave the lead up in the second half,” O’Brien said of the Stetson match. “We have performed well at times, but the results have not always been great.” The Lady Bisons lack a go-to scorer this season and instead have several players capable of finding the back of the net. Senior Ellen Lundy leads the team with three goals, while Leah Cernicky, Riley Henry and Selah Gilmore each have two tallies apiece. “We’d love to have a top forward that’s punching in 10 or 12 goals, but we don’t have that,” O’Brien said. “For us, it’s been scoring by committee. The success is shared – I don’t think...