CHICKASHA – The Drover men were recently placed at No. 23 in the nation, just in time to compete against one of their toughest opponents of the season.

But this weekend could prove a great test for both USAO soccer teams, as the 2-0 women take on Texas Wesleyan, which defeated No. 13 Oklahoma City earlier this week.

“We are concerned with the game on Friday right now,” head coach Jimmy Hampton said. “Texas Wesleyan women knocked off No. 13 Oklahoma City this week, and the men drew with OCU. They are excellent squads we play Friday.”

The Drovers have home-field advantage in those Friday games. The women kick off at 1 p.m., with the men following at 3 p.m.

The following day, the No. 23 men turn around to play No. 21 Bethel College out of Tennessee, also at home.

“Bethel was as good or better than any team we saw last year at nationals. They are technical, fast, well coached and just a top team in the country,” Hampton said. “We are still very new and young, so I feel like we are the underdog.”

This will be the first time this season the Drovers have faced a ranked opponent. The men start the season 1-1.

“It will give us a gauge of where we are and where we need to go,” Hampton said. “It will be a great game, I hope, and a good chance for our players to compete against a great side. It’s a excellent opportunity for our players and one we hope they embrace.”

The match against Bethel kicks off a noon at Drover Pitch.

Published: Sept. 15, 2011