Flashes secure first conference win of the season

Kayla McMillen
Kent players Cameron Shedenhelm celebrates with teammate Maddie Holmes after Shedenhelm scored the flashes only goal. Kent beat Ball State 1-0.

Gina Butkovich

The Kent State soccer team (6-5-1, 2-2 Mid-American Conference) had a successful weekend, taking home two wins in conference matchups.

Kent State 1, Ball State 0

The Flashes started the weekend off against Ball State (5-3-2, 1-2-1 MAC). The first half started slowly, with neither team finding the back of the net. The Flashes led with shots on goal, four to two.

“We were getting pressured an awful lot and had to figure out how to break down the press,” coach Rob Marinaro said. “Defense was fantastic and limited them getting forward, which allowed us to continue putting on pressure.”

Kent State again led in shots on goal in the second half. This time, it paid off with an unassisted goal from sophomore Cameron Shedenhelm in the 83rd minute. Shedenhelm’s game-winning goal gave the Flashes their first win of the weekend and their first confrence win of the season.

“Cameron has been limited a little bit with not being able to play a lot,” Marinaro said. “And now she is getting back into the rhythm and stepping up to be an offensive threat for us on a consistent basis.”

Kent State 4, Miami (OH) 2

The Flashes’ second game of the weekend was against Miami (OH). This time they led in shots on goal, 14-2.

“We came into the game with high energy, and more than anything, we wanted to be able to play our game,” Marinaro said.

Kent State came alive in the second half. Sophomores Vital Kats and Maddie Holmes both scored twice. The RedHawks countered with two goals of its own, but it couldn’t catch up with the Flashes. The game ended with a 4-2 win.

“Our ball movement was a lot quicker, and we were able to unbalance their defense,” Marinaro said. “Our speed play was really quick.”

Both games involved great defensive play by the Flashes.

“Defense was really good, and we didn’t give them a lot of opportunities,” Marinaro said.

As for the rest of the season, the team plans on continuing to take it one game at a time.

“Right now, we are just looking at Buffalo and concentrating on playing the best game that we can,” Marinaro said.

Kent State plays again at home at 7 p.m. Tuesday as it take on Buffalo (9-2, 3-1 MAC).

Gina Butkovich is a sports reporter. Contact her at [email protected].