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SOU offense looks to catch up with defense in final home stand

Southern Oregon University's soccer team will play its final regular-season home games this week when Eastern Oregon and College of Idaho make stops at Raider Stadium.

If the Raiders (3-8 overall, 2-2 Cascade Conference) wish to return home for the postseason, it's time to get busy. They'll hook up with the Mountaineers (2-4-3, 0-1-2) at 4 p.m. on Thursday and with the Coyotes (5-3-2, 2-0-1) at 6 p.m. on Saturday with a chance to help themselves out.

SOU's problem remains simple, as does the remedy of scoring goals. No conference opponent has pinned more than one goal on them, but the Raiders have followed up both of their CCC wins with 1-0 losses.

On an encouraging note, they've manufactured more shots in their last four contests than in any of the previous seven.

"We're out-possessing and we're out-shooting our opponents, but it's the same thing – we just need to sneak more in the back of the net," SOU coach Jenni Rosenberg said. "All we can do is focus on getting the little things right, the stuff we can control."

The Raiders – sitting in fifth place and needing to sneak into the top four to become a playoff host – are 7-0-1 since 2007 against EOU and have four straight wins against C of I. But the Mountaineers will be attempting to get payback for last year's 2-0 playoff loss at University Field, and the Coyotes are fresh off their biggest victory in program history, a 1-0 upset of top-ranked Concordia in Caldwell.

"It's going to be tough against two good teams," Rosenberg said. "This is a key point in our season."

About Eastern Oregon: The Mountaineers have been shutout victims five times, but were impressive recently in ties against C of I (1-1) and Warner Pacific (2-2), receiving their only conference loss from Concordia (0-2). Kaeliana Devera is responsible for three goals, Sydney Nelson has two, and Makensie Forsyth has one goal and two assists. Danielle Robinson, who played her way onto the All-CCC first team in 2013, anchors the defense.

SOU leads the all-time series, 12-3-1.

About College of Idaho: Hailey Woods assisted her sister, Sydney, with a corner kick for the header that tipped the scale against Concordia in the 65th minute on Saturday. Six different Coyotes have scored their last six goals, but Katelyn Benavidez leads the team with four scores and one assist. Jamiece Yizar (3 goals, 3 assists) and second-team All-CCC performer Summer Jackson (3 goals) are also featured on the attack. The Coyotes have yet to allow more than two goals in a match, and the last time they were shut out was their opener.

C of I finished last in the CCC in 2013 and is seeking its first postseason appearance since 2011. The all-time series against SOU is tied, 9-9.

SOU leaders: Presley Lambert and Kelsey Randall were credited with a goal and an assist apiece in the Raiders' 2-1 win last Thursday at Northwest Christian. Lambert now owns a team-high three goals, while Randall joined Megan McArthur, Jacquie Galvez and Kendra Madaras-Kelly with her second… McArthur and Allyson Ward still lead the team with two assists each.

For the season, SOU has 103 shots (48 on goal) to opponents' 131 (74 on goal).