Desoto County Sports

06/07 Lady Lobos Rush DeSoto soccer to national finals

Photo: The 06/07 Lady Lobos Rush DeSoto soccer team, set to play in July at the USYS National President’s Cup tournament in Wichita, Kansas. (Courtesy photo)

June 26 – Next month, a competitive youth soccer team from DeSoto County will take the national stage for the first time. The 06/07 Lady Lobos Rush DeSoto soccer girls will compete in the United States Youth Soccer (USYS) National President’s Cup Tournament in Wichita, Kansas. Dates of the tournament are July 12-16.  It’s the first time a Lobos Rush Soccer team has reached a national tournament.  

It’s another indication of the growth for youth soccer in the county with high school teams winning championships or reaching new levels in playoff soccer. 

Meanwhile at Northwest Mississippi Community College, the Lady Rangers women’s team reached the second round of the NJCAA Division II National Tournament last November. 

James Beattie talks to the 06/07 Lady Lobos Rush DeSoto soccer team. (Bob Bakken/

That particular team was coached by Scottish native James Beattie, who has been involved in Lobos Rush soccer as its Director of Coaching since 2018.

“They’ve qualified for the national tournament through the Mississippi State Cup as runner-up to start with,” Beattie said. “They then progressed to a regional event in Dallas, Texas, where they placed third to create a bid to the national tournament, which is the last eight teams in the country to go play in Kansas.”  

Beattie said the roster is made up of sophomore and junior grade players from DeSoto County schools, including Hernando, Center Hill, and Northpoint Christian. Lobos Rush will be one of the two teams representing the Southern Regional at the National President’s Cup.  

“I started coaching some of these girls six years ago, that’s when I got started with DeSoto County soccer,” Beattie said. “The fact that we’ll go to a national tournament together is a pretty unique and cool experience.” 

He adds that’s an indication of the growth of soccer in DeSoto County, a growth Beattie calls “immense.” 

“We’re at a place where we’ve now got a team in every age group,” he said. “We also had teams in the regional event and while they didn’t make it to the national event, just making it to that regional event is a pretty big deal.”  

Claire Chambliss is a part of the 06/07 Lady Lobos DeSoto group and the Northpoint Christian player entering her senior year this fall said she’s seen this group become a very cohesive unit.  

“I’ve been playing with this team ever since intramurals stopped at Northpoint and we’ve all really stayed together for the most part,” Chambliss said. “It’s just really fun playing with this team. We’ve gotten to know each other really well and we work really well together.”

She adds her team is looking forward to representing local soccer at a national event.  

“We’ll just get together and show everyone what we can do and how good we have become,” Chambliss said. “It’ll be cool to be able to go and do something this big and just show everyone how good we are.”

The coach thinks the 06/07 Lady Lobos DeSoto team will be very competitive at the national tournament in Wichita.  

“I think there’s no reason why this team can’t compete and potentially win the national tournament,” Beattie said. “The key is getting into ‘the dance,’ and once you do, what you do in the dance is completely up to you.”