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Women's soccer beginning to prepare for SUNYAC opponents

by Carson Werner - Sports Editor
Tue, Sep 11th 2018 10:50 pm
Sophomore defender, Rian McMullen battles alongside a New England Pilgrim for the ball in an effort that saw Brockport victorious 2-0. The women's soccer team will take on Nazareth College in a `Breast Cancer Awareness` game, at Brockport on Sept. 12.
Sophomore defender, Rian McMullen battles alongside a New England Pilgrim for the ball in an effort that saw Brockport victorious 2-0. The women's soccer team will take on Nazareth College in a "Breast Cancer Awareness" game, at Brockport on Sept. 12.

Last week was not the greatest for the women’s soccer team as they dropped two close games to two non-conference opponents. Both St. John Fisher and Houghton defeated the Golden Eagles by one goal margins, with game-winning-goals scored in the final ten minutes of each game. 

The game against the St. John Fisher Cardinals was neck and neck throughout the course of the whole match. 

Despite shots and saves staying even throughout the whole game, St. John Fisher’s Carli Kovarik, netted the only goal in the 80’ minute where the Cardinals would hold on to blank the Golden Eagles, handing The College at Brockport its first loss of the season.  

The Houghton Highlanders were not an easy task to handle either. Brockport, playing on unfamiliar turf, outshot Houghton the entire game, but struggled with finding the back of the net until late in the game. The Highlanders were the first to open scoring in the 86’ minute, but Brockport’s Lindsey Lovett, answered just two minutes later to tie the game and send it to overtime. Four minutes in, Houghton capped off a tough weekend game and sent Brockport home empty-handed.  

The low-scoring games the squad has been through this year makes its defense look unstoppable. However, offensively the team excels greatly, just lacking with finishing the ball. 

Entering his third year as head coach, Mike Idland, saw improvements despite the two losses the team earned last week. 

“Our defense is strong, but I think you’ll also see that statistically over three games, we have overwhelmingly outshot our opponents and earned many more corner kicks than our opponents,” Idland said. “This is a good indication, both that our attack is highly effective and that our opponent doesn’t have the ball nearly as much as we do; you can’t concede many goals if you have possession of the ball.”

 “We fought hard in the Fisher game, but we didn’t play nearly as smart as we’re capable of, so we needed to improve in that area for Houghton,” Idland said. “We did, and we honestly played a beautiful game at Houghton, but we really need to ask a little bit more of ourselves in front of goal to start tucking more of these chances away and putting these games out of reach for our opponents.”

These games, although non-league, are very valuable to the soccer team in preparation for when SUNYAC opponents are introduced to the schedule. Most collegiate schedules consist of multiple non-league games before they eventually face off against their conference opponents mid-season. Sophomore forward, Myriah Saar, recognizes the potential that each and every game leading up to SUNYAC play holds.

“Losing against non-conference teams is not good and shouldn’t be taken lightly,” Saar said. “But at the same time, we can use those games to learn from our mistakes and see what we should do differently for the games when it matters even more.”

The women’s soccer team is approaching its first league game which will take place on Sept. 21, against Plattsburgh. Following the Plattsburgh match, the Golden Eagles will consecutively take on three more SUNYAC opponents at home. In fact, the next nine of 13 games will be against in-conference teams.

 In preparation for the critical part of the schedule, Idland and the team will focus on themselves rather than their opponents before they meet on the field.

 “We’ll watch video breakdown of our own play in order to highlight the areas that we’re doing well in and identify areas that need improvement,” Idland said. “Then, we’ll make sure that both are incorporated into our practices.”

Brockport has opened its season with two wins and two losses, no game having more than three goals total. With upcoming SUNYAC play, the team will look to crack down against Nazareth College on Sept. 12, and D’Youville College on Sept. 15. The two matches will be the team’s final non-league games before facing off against the Plattsburgh Cardinals.  

 

sports.stylus@brockport.edu | @Carsonwerner1