Mississippi Fuego Prepares to Host Defending National Champs - WHLT 22 Connecting the Pine Belt

Mississippi Fuego Prepares to Host Defending National Champs

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The Mississippi Fuego Women's Premier Soccer League team is still searching for its first win of the regular season.

The team tied 3-3 with the Georgia Revolution on Saturday. They now take to the road for a Thursday night matchup against Alabama FC, but that's not the game everyone is focused on, as players anxiously await their weekend matchup with the Gulf Coast Texans.

"We're all really excited to play, and to get on the field," says MS Fuego right defensive back Giselle Bryce-Cotes.

That's because the Texans are the defending WPSL national champions, something that doesn't intimidate Fuego coaches or players.

"No I don't think so. A lot of these girls see those girls in college, so I don't think there's any intimidation," says MS Fuego head coach Danny Owens.

"I don't think we're scared at all. We're a totally different team, and we're such a deep bench that anybody that subs in for anyone else is going to be just as good, so there's not going to be any weak parts on the field. No one's scared, everyone's ready," says Bryce-Cotes.

Bryce-Cotes is only two years removed from playing soccer for Owens at William Carey University.

Her familiarity with the Fuego head coach gives the right defensive back confidence heading into the big game.

"He really cares about us, and I always feel well prepared for games, and I know a lot about the team that's coming in, and we know how we're going to work together as a team and our strategy, and I always feel confident when our team steps on the field," says Bryce-Cotes.

When the Fuego take the field on Saturday, several factors outline the team's keys to success.

"You just got to take every ball as they come, and brush it off if you mess up and keep going. Encouragement and teamwork is what's going to help us through that game," says Bryce-Cotes.

"Being really good defensively, because they have a lot of special players on the ball, and then just taking our chances - making sure that when we get those opportunities we put them in the back of the net."

Despite being the underdog, Owens doesn't think his team is overmatched.

"I think our girls have every bit of a chance to win the game as they do."

Saturday's game will take place at the Jones County Junior College soccer fields at 6:30 p.m.

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