After wrapping up an unforgiving preseason schedule against some of the West Coast's finest, the Southern Oregon women's soccer team will wipe its slate clean of a 1-5 record and begin Cascade Conference play today in Eugene.

After wrapping up an unforgiving preseason schedule against some of the West Coast's finest, the Southern Oregon women's soccer team will wipe its slate clean of a 1-5 record and begin Cascade Conference play today in Eugene.

The Raiders, fresh off a 3-2 effort against Holy Names that marked their first win of the season, will attempt to generate their first win streak when they take on Northwest Christian.

"I thought we really deserved to win," coach Jon Clement said of the effort, which featured scores from freshmen Kelly Cates and Katie Griffith and sophomore Kelly Clark. "I've thought that a couple other times this year, but it was nice for the kids to get rewarded for their good play."

The Deacons (3-6, 0-1) started conference play last week with a 1-0 setback at the hands of Corban. Although they have been shut out in all six of their losses and were picked to finish last in the conference after a winless CCC campaign in 2007, the Deacons showed signs of explosiveness in their wins, accumulating 22 goals in two games against Mills College and five more against Simpson.

"They're much improved (from last season)," Clement said. "They work very hard and will certainly give us a difficult road game."

Northwest Christian is led by Karli Vath's nine goals and six assists, while Samantha Stewart has connected on seven of her 10 shots on goal.

Going into Sunday's game, the Raiders had been out-shot by their opponents 79-39 but turned the tables against Holy Names, posting 22 shots, including 12 on goal, while allowing 20.

"We had a good flow going, especially for the first hour or so,"

Clement said. "But overall we moved the ball quite nicely."

The Raiders have received a goal apiece from five players so far, and are led by Griffith's 20 shots, seven on goal.

Southern Oregon is 2-0 all-time against Northwest Christian, including a 7-1 home victory last year.

The match is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m., after which the Raiders will return home for a pair of non-conference matches. The first is a 2:30 p.m. Friday meeting with Westminster, followed by a 1 p.m. Sunday showdown with Western Oregon.