Soccer goes into overtime twice over the weekend

Dante Centofanti

This weekend was crucial for the Kent State women’s soccer team. They played Eastern Michigan and Central Michigan, in whom they were “neck and neck” with in the MAC standings. 

On Friday against Eastern Michigan redshirt junior forward Sabrina McNeill put the visitors from Yipsilanti on the board in the twelfth minute by a throw in header. Junior midfielder Vital Kats responded with a goal in the 20th minute with an assist by junior forward Cameron Shedenhelm. 

Sophomore midfielder Kylie Frantz gave the Eagles a halftime lead in the 44th minute.Vital Kats scored on a penalty kick in minute 83 to tie the game before the 90th minute. The Flashes are no strangers to overtime play this season, as they would enter their 3rd overtime match Friday evening. But McNeil netted her ninth goal of the season and second of the game as Eastern Michigan (4-10-2, 3-5) earned three points in a 2-1 victory . 

The Flashes were back on Sunday at Dix Stadium, this time against Central Michigan earning one point in a 1-1 tie that took two overtimes to decide. The team struggled early defensively with Central Michigan Senior midfielder Marle Bringard scoring her sixth goal of 2019. Then Kats tied the match in minute 30, giving her eight goals on the season. Redshirt Sophomore Goalkeeper Faith O’Neil spoke about what went wrong early in the match defensively. 

“Leading up to this game we knew they played the same formation as us so we would be really matched up,” O’Neil said. “We hate conceding in the first few minutes and we continue to do it and it makes us chase for the rest of the game. A bunch of little mistakes that eventually cost us in the end, but we know what we need to do better and hopefully we don’t conceed like that again.”

O’Neil had 6 saves on the day, giving her 62 saves in 2019, ranking 7th in the MAC. Defense was present with both teams. Neither team scored on 4 shots in the second half, and despite having four corner kick opportunities the Chippewas could not capitalize. Overtime showed the Flashes solid defensive sets, by not letting the visitors score a goal with a combined five shots in 2 overtimes as they tied with Central Michigan (7-3-3, 4-3-1). 

After this weekend Kent State is now 5th in the current MAC standings with 11 points and a (3-3-2, 5-7-3) record. According to head coach Rob Marinaro, the team’s destiny moving forward is in their hands.

“We are still in control of what can happen,” Marinaro. “We have to learn from these types of games, and continue to play our game to try and pick up some points in these matches. If we bring the intensity we brought today against Central Michigan and piece it together with our game we will be ok.”

The team is back in action Thursday in Munice, Indiana against Ball State at 3:30 p.m.

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