At the midway point of their season, the women’s soccer team holds a record of 5-2-1 and a SUNYAC record of 1-1. With seven of the remaining eight games against conference opponents, the women are entering not only the final stretch of their season, but perhaps the most crucial part. Coming off a 3-1 four game road trip where the women outscored the opposition 5-1, there is a palpable feeling of optimism as the team nears the end of the regular season.
“This last weekend was tough, as we always expect to win when we step on the field. Friday against Fredonia was a physical battle that we held up well against. We were clearly the better team, but took a bit of time to find the goal we needed,” head coach Nate Wiley said. “Fortunately, we did and were happy with the result. Buffalo State was a different story. They are a good team that just gave a bit more effort over the 90 minutes than we did, unfortunately.”
During the road trip, the women broke an impressive streak that any team would be happy to hold: 67 straight matches without receiving a card—the longest streak in the nation. The only streak that really matters to the women, however, is maintaining a winning streak.
“We need to make sure everyone on the team remains focused. Our goals and our strong defense are a direct result of how hard we train. If we keep up our intensity and focus, we will find success,” junior midfielder Emily Green said. “So far, our season has been a steady ascension. We all came into the season fit and ready to work. It took a few games to work out the kinks, but we are now a team that is capable of winning SUNYACS.”
The defense has been strongly consistent for this group throughout the season and there is no reason that the strength of this team should falter anytime soon. It is the offense that has proven to be inconsistent at times—if there is a roadblock in the way of success, it may ride on whether the attacks can come together.
“We have done a good job keeping teams from scoring against us, but have been a bit inconsistent in the attacking third,” Wiley said. “This is an area where we would like to see some improvement.” Two key offensive players have been Green and sophomore forward Leah Greene as they lead the team in points—11 and eight respectively.
In the final stretch of the season, we will see if the Knights are a championship caliber team.
The Knights have two upcoming home games on Friday Oct. 2 and Saturday Oct. 3 against SUNY New Paltz and SUNY Oneonta respectively. Both games will be great tests for the team on their home turf.