Kent State looks to rebound at home

Nick Walton

After winning its first two conference games at home, the Kent State soccer team found trouble on the road with two losses last weekend.

Fortunately for the Flashes (5-6, 2-2 Mid-American Conference), the next four games are at home, where it has a 3-0 record this season. The homestand starts at 4 p.m. today against MAC leader Central Michigan and continues at 1 p.m. Sunday against Eastern Michigan.

“It’s always good to be home just because we have more fans supporting us and we’re on the field that we’re familiar with,” junior forward Megan Hill said. “After the two losses, we all came together as a team and said we needed to get to work this week and just be ready to play this weekend.”

Hill said the team is eager to return to the field after its losses to Miami and Ball State last weekend.

“We’re ready to prove ourselves that that was just a fluke and we’re going to come back out strong,” Hill said.

The Flashes scored only one goal last weekend after scoring eight the previous week. The team is hoping to make up for that this weekend.

“(The team) understood that we weren’t happy with what we got last weekend, so we’re looking to rectify this weekend,” Kent State coach Rob Marinaro said.

The Flashes’ undefeated home record will be tested against Central Michigan. Through four MAC games, Central Michigan (9-2, 4-0 MAC) has shut out all of its opponents and only allowed four goals this season. Last season, Kent State lost 2-1 in double overtime at Central Michigan.

“They come in 4-0, so that kind of speaks for itself,” Marinaro said. “They’re playing very well, (they are) extremely athletic and we need to match up and bring our intensity level as high as we can this weekend.”

Sunday, Kent State will play Eastern Michigan (7-3-3, 2-1-1 MAC), which is tied for third in the conference. The Flashes lost 1-0 at Eastern Michigan last season.

Despite the quality of the opponents this weekend, the team is not backing down from them.

“They’re two very good teams, and MAC games are always hard,” Hill said. “We just want to make them have a losing streak now – Central Michigan hasn’t lost yet, so we’re about to give them their first loss.”

Contact sports reporter Nick Walton at [email protected].