Elias Albert, Staff Reporter

Eastern, at 2-9-2, will try to pick up their first wins of the conference schedule while hosting Tennessee Tech on Friday and Morehead State on Sunday.

Tennessee Tech is 5-4-3 and 3-0 in Ohio Valley Conference play, and Morehead State is 5-7-1, and 2-1 in OVC play.

Eastern coach Jason Cherry is working to improve his team’s attack, following a scoreless draw with Jacksonville State last Sunday.

“We’ve been working hard with our attack,” Cherry said. “We’ve been working on trying to spread the field and attacking the corners.”

Freshman midfielder Kaci Schonert was another player that Cherry said could have an impact in the coming future.

Cherry wants to see early-season leaders come through as well.

He said that he would like to see players like senior forward Molly Hawkins, senior forward Hannah Miller and junior forward Kathleen MacKinnon come through big as well.

“They’re all a handful for any defense,” Cherry said. “They’re dangerous and can score at just about any moment in the game.”

Cherry said that he would like to see more opportunities off set pieces.

“We’re great in the air off of set pieces,” Cherry said. “We like those opportunities because it gives us time to set up a play. We just need to execute better and maybe have some luck on our side.”

Eastern failed to put the ball in the net in the game against Jacksonville State despite having numerous corners and free kicks.

What appears to be the true strength for Eastern right now is the play of the defense.

Coming off of a shutout can always be a bonus, but Cherry said that he likes what he sees.

“I think we’re much better on the defensive side,” Cherry said. “I think that we still have on being on the same page as a whole, but we’re communicating well and can get better.”

Specifically, Cherry knows what to expect from his team’s upcoming opponents and will strategize accordingly.

“Tennessee Tech likes to keep possession and run it from the outside to in,” Cherry said. “I think that we match up against that scheme well.”

Cherry said that it might take precision to score against Tennessee Tech’s goalkeeper, freshman Kari Naerdemann. She leads the conference in save percentage.

He said that despite the toughness of Tennessee Tech’s goalkeeper, his team can match up well with its own prolific goalkeeper.

Eastern freshman goalkeeper Maddie Lyon is fresh off of her first shutout of the conference schedule and is looking to add more to her freshman resume.

“Maddie has been great for us,” Cherry said. “She does know that she could be even better though. She works hard to improve.”

Lyon will face offenses in Tennessee Tech and Morehead State that have averaged two goals per game in OVC play.


Elias Albert can be reached at 581-2812 or at [email protected]