#26 Mississippi Women's Soccer 2014 Preview

Ole Miss Rebels

Overall Rank: #26
#5 SEC
#26 Mississippi Women's Soccer 2014 Preview
Mississippi Team Page


Mississippi had a great 2013 season, going 7-3-1 in SEC play and reaching the NCAA Tournament. And there is no shame in losing to the likes Florida and Texas A&M. There is no shame in losing to Florida State either, but unfortunately for the Rebels they ran into the Seminoles in the second round of the NCAA Tournament. After beating Jackson State 9-0, Ole Miss had plenty of momentum heading into the second round contest in Tallahassee, but Florida State was too much for Coach Matt Mott and company.

2013 Record: 16-6-2, 7-3-1
2013 Postseason: NCAA
Coach: Matt Mott

Returning Leaders:
Goals: Oliva Harrison, Junior, F/M, 7
Assists: Oliva Harrison, Junior, F/M, 8
Shots: Oliva Harrison, Junior, F/M, 22
Saves: Kelly McCormick, Senior, GK, 79

Other Key Returnees: F Bethany Bunker, F/M Addie Forbus, M Jennifer Miller, M Gretchen Harknett, D/M Melissa Capocaccia, D/M Maddie Friedmann, D Samantha Sanders

Key Losses: F Rafaelle Souza, M/F Mandy McCalla, M Erin Emerson

Every defender who started a game for Ole Miss last season returns. Melissa Capocaccia, Gretchen Harknett and Samantha Sanders all had very promising freshmen campaigns and are ready to step into even bigger roles as sophomores. Maddie Friedman, Jessica Hiskey and Georgia Russell are more experienced juniors. While returning six defenders with starting experience is great for this season, none of them are seniors and the 2015 defense will be amazingly experienced. However, in 2015 keeper Kelly McCormick will be gone. But for now McCormick will be in net for Ole Miss. McCormick has been starting since halfway through her freshman campaign and she just keeps getting better and better. With so much experience in front of McCormick, this should be the best defense Ole Miss has had in quite some time.

The 2013 offense may have been the best the Rebels have ever seen, ranking 5th in the country with 2.63 goals per game. But now Coach Mott must move on without Rafaelle Souza, Mandy McCalla and Erin Emerson. Souza netted an impressive 22 goals, while McCalla added 15 and Emerson one. That is 38 of the team’s 63 goals out the door. Olivia Harrison will step into the starring role after scoring seven goals and dishing out eight assists in 2013. Also back is Bethany Bunker, who totaled six goals and seven assists. Sophomore Sara Coleman missed the 2013 season with an injury. Back in 2012 she scored three goals and added six assists. Coleman, Harrison and Bunker will score some goals, but not as many as Souza and McCalla.

Final Projection:
The Ole Miss offense almost has to take a step back, but the defense is going to be better. The result should be about the same as last season with a team that should make the NCAA Tournament, but fails to compete with the elite programs in the SEC. Yet, they are just a goal scorer or two away from making things very interesting at the top of the conference.

Projected Postseason: NCAA Tournament

By the Numbers:
Scoring Offense: 2.63 (5th in nation, 1st in conference)
Goals-Against Average: 1.015 (84, 4)
Shutout Percentage: 0.417 (69, 4)
Save Percentage:  0.769 (186, 6)

Madness 2014 Women’s Soccer Recruit Rankings:
#18 Marnie Merritt


See All College Sports Madness Top 44 Women's Soccer Previews