KSU soccer dominates Akron on Senior Day


Forward Calli Rinicella receives a pass during the soccer game against the University at Buffalo on Friday, Sept. 26, 2014. The Flashes lost, 2-0.

Ben Orner

Box Score — University at Buffalo

Box Score — Akron

The first Wagon Wheel point of the 2014-15 Akron and Kent State rivalry goes to the Flashes.

After a tough loss to Buffalo on Friday, Kent State came out Sunday and dominated arch-rival Akron, 3-0, improving to 6-3-1 on the season and making the most of Senior Day.

“It was a really big day because we lost to Buffalo on Friday, so it was important for our team to get the win today,” junior forward Madison Helterbran said.

The Flashes outshot the Zips by a 26-3 margin, while also winning the corner kick ratio, 9-1.

The soccer match was the first athletic meeting between Kent State and Akron this season. With the win, the Flashes get a point in the annual Wagon Wheel competition between the two schools.

“Against Akron, it’s always an exciting win for our whole athletic department,” Helterbran said.

Kent State’s three goals were scored in the second half. The offense kickstarted when redshirt freshman Doni Capehart netted two in the 60th and 76th minutes, respectively. Helterbran sealed the win with a goal in the 80th minute.

“In the first half we got a lot of opportunities, and then at halftime we talked about how (goals) were going to come,” Helterbran said. “Once the first one went in from Doni (Capehart), they just kept falling.”

Kent State’s five seniors — Stephanie Haugh, Alyssa Meier, Mariah Sidwell, Renee Loya and Calli Rinicella — were honored before Sunday’s game.

“We’ve got a tremendous group of seniors, and it’s really nice to root for them today with a ‘W’ they all deserve,” head coach Rob Marinaro said.

All of Kent State’s six wins this season have been shutouts, meaning that when the Flashes win, they win big. Marinaro said he attributed the feat to overall team defense and the pressure his team is able to put on its opponents.

Despite the win Sunday and the shutout streak staying alive, the Flashes fell to the Buffalo Bulls on Friday at Zoeller Field. The 2-0 loss featured two early Buffalo goals in the ninth and 23rd minutes.

“We have to play hard, and we have to give the best effort we possibly can,” Marinaro said. “On Friday we fell short of that, and the team knew it. But they did that (Sunday), and it was proved in a positive result.”

The weekend’s matches against Buffalo and Akron were the last half of a four-game home stand in which Kent State went 2-1-1. The Buffalo and Akron games were also the first two of 11 Mid-American Conference games for the Flashes.

The women will travel next to Northern Illinois on Friday, Oct. 3, and Western Michigan on Sunday, Oct. 5. Then they will be back in Kent for two home games.

Contact Ben Orner at [email protected].