STARKVILLE, Miss. - Mississippi State closes the 2012 road slate this weekend as it faces a pair of big Southeastern Conference soccer matches against Alabama and No. 12 Florida.
State opens the weekend Friday in Tuscaloosa with a 7 p.m. opening kick. Then it's off to Gainesville, where the Dawgs meet the Gators in a 1 p.m. CT contest televised by Comcast Sports Southeast.
Neil Macdonald's squad looks to turn out positive results after a pair of tough 2-0 setbacks at Auburn and No. 16 Missouri last weekend moved MSU to 7-7-1 overall and 0-7-1 in the SEC.
Skylar Rosson became the second MSU goalkeeper to eclipse the 300-save mark with Friday night's season-high 12-save effort against Auburn. She followed that performance with 10 stops against Missouri.
The Edmond, Okla., native rates fifth in the SEC with 68 saves and has pitched 5.1 shutouts.
Junior Elisabeth Sullivan leads the Bulldog strike with a personal-best seven goals, three assists and 17 points. The SEC leader in shots with 65, the Memphis native is tied for fourth in the league in both points and goals.
Friday's contest also features two of the SEC's top rookie attackers in State's Honeye Heydari and Alabama's Katie Bourgeois. Heydari, a Jackson, Tenn., native has compiled 14 points behind five goals and four assists.
Bourgeois has found the net seven times this season and assisted two more goals to lead Alabama to a 7-5-2 overall record and 2-4-2 league mark.
The Crimson Tide returns home following a 5-0 setback at Texas A&M and 3-1 loss at Arkansas last weekend.
State will be seeking a second-straight positive result against both Alabama and Florida. The Dawgs tied the Crimson Tide 2-2 in Starkville last season before upsetting the Gators, then ranked No. 11, 1-0 on the home pitch.
The Gators return to Gainesville 10-3-1 overall and 7-1-0 in the SEC following a road swing that saw them defeat LSU 2-0 and No. 5 Texas A&M, 2-1.
Florida is led by Havana Solaun's five goals and four assists this season.
Taylor Burke has started
every game in goal, stopping 36 shots while surrendering 15 goals.
Fans can stay updated on Bulldog soccer via the team's official Twitter (www.twitter.com/mstateSOC) and Facebook (www.facebook.com/mstateSOC) pages.