Women’s soccer team sees unique OVC slate


Jason Howell

Freshman forward Chloe Gottschalk runs the ball up the pitch in a match against Southeast Missouri on Friday at Lakeside Field. The Panthers lost to SEMO 4-0. After losing to Southern Illinois-Edwardsville 3-1 on Sunday, the Panthers are 0-2 in the OVC and 1-9-1 overall.

Dominic Renzetti, Assistant Sports Editor

The Eastern women’s soccer team has a unique challenge in its slate of matches for this year’s Ohio Valley Conference schedule. Every team the Panthers play this season has just one match a weekend, where the Panthers have two, on Fridays and Sundays.

Eastern dropped its first two OVC matches last weekend, losing to Southeast Missouri and Southern Illinois-Edwardsville. Friday was Southeast Missouri’s only match of the weekend and Sunday was Southern Illinois-Edwardsville’s only match of the weekend. This weekend, the Panthers take on Belmont and Austin Peay.

Eastern is the lone opponent for both teams this weekend, and that is how it is going to be for the Panthers here on out. With the possibility of his team not being as rested as their opponent, Eastern head coach Jason Cherry said he would need to make adjustments.

“For me, the coach, I’ll have to look at my substitution patterns and maybe rely on some people on a Sunday that didn’t play on a Friday, which I’m more than willing to do, especially if you look at home much subbing I did in the non-conference,” he said. “We have enough players who can step up. I think but as a team, we’re trying to look at it one game at a time of course and go out there and just do our best.”

The starting lineups for Friday and Sunday’s matches were mostly the same, except for two players. Red-shirt junior Chris Reed sat out Friday’s match because of a red card she received in the previous match at Chicago State. Reed returned to the lineup on Sunday, replacing Kathleen MacKinnon.

The Panthers also switched up on defense, starting freshman Carrie Caplin against Southeast Missouri, but electing to go with senior Allie Lakie on Sunday. MacKinnon and Caplin were both used as substitutes against Southern Illinois-Edwardsville.

OVC play brings physicality

The start of the conference schedule was a bit of a wake up call for some of the Panthers younger players, senior Meagan Radloff said after Friday’s loss.

“I think a bunch of people were kind of surprised coming into conference,” she said. “They’re not ready for how physical (it is) and the speed of play.”

Radloff, who led the team in scoring last season, had one assist during the weekend. She said the level of play is much different outside of the non-conference.

“I think it just gets taken up a notch with physicality and speed of play,” she said. “It’s a lot quicker because people want it more, this is what your season is for, is conference.”

Carter gets back to scoring

Senior Madison Carter’s scored the Panthers’ lone goal against Southern Illinois-Edwardsville on Saturday, her first since 2013.

Carter scored the Panthers’ first goal of the 2013 season on Aug. 23, 2013, in a 5-1 loss against Oakland. She had 23 shots the rest of the season, but was never able to find the back of the net. Despite not scoring, she finished the 2013 season with three assists.

Carter, a native of Lawrenceburg, Ky., has now scored at least one goal in three straight seasons for the Panthers. She started both matches during the weekend after only starting in two matches during the non-conference schedule. She started 20 matches last season.

Hinton remains only goalkeeper on roster

With the status of Kylie Morgan going forward still up in the air, junior Emily Hinton is the Panthers’ one and only healthy goalkeeper on the roster. Cherry said the team has been working out field players in practice to step up in goal if needed.

Hinton made six saves in both matches against Southeast Missouri and Southern Illinois-Edwardsville. Morgan injured her shoulder in the non-conference finale against Valparaiso and did not return. Cherry said they would continue to evaluate Morgan’s progress.

Dominic Renzetti can  be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected].