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No. 1 Eagles head to national tourney

By By Robbie Robertson/The Meridian Star
Meridian Community College enters the National Junior College soccer tournament as the No. 1 team in the nation.
But that doesn't mean the 21-1 Eagles are the favorites to win their first soccer title.
MCC takes on Essex, N.J., in a 3 p.m. contest Thursday at Tyler Community College. If they win, they will play in the semifinals on Friday with the championship game set for Sunday afternoon at 1 p.m.
Essex comes in with a 12-4-0 record after an upset win to make the national tournament.
After two games last week in Tyler in the Mid-Southwest Tournament, MCC will head back as the "home team."
Clements hopes the short trip will make up for the lack of games the Eagles will have to play during the tournament.
Clements said part of that is because of a talented freshman class and a plenty of blowout wins.
The Eagles are led by Damani Ralph, Kahreem Cooke and Andrew McLeod, all foreign players. But add in Mississippi native Jose Figuero, Caleb Yates and Jacob McCord and the Eagles have a good mixture of players.
Last year, MCC beat State Fair 2-0 in the opening round of the tournament, a rarity for the district. It was MCC's first opening-round win in the tournament.
Robbie Robertson is sports editor for The Meridian Star. E-mail him at rrobertson@meridianstar.com.

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