The Daily Eastern News

Women’s soccer team to hold ‘Hope for Hannah’ game in home finale

Eastern+sophomore+Itxaso+Aguero+battles+for+a+ball+with+a+Tennessee-Martin+in+a+0-0+draw+at+Lakeside+Field+on+Sept.+30.+The+Panthers+hold+a+4-6-4+record+this+season.
Eastern sophomore Itxaso Aguero battles for a ball with a Tennessee-Martin in a 0-0 draw at Lakeside Field on Sept. 30. The Panthers hold a 4-6-4 record this season.

Eastern sophomore Itxaso Aguero battles for a ball with a Tennessee-Martin in a 0-0 draw at Lakeside Field on Sept. 30. The Panthers hold a 4-6-4 record this season.

Adam Tumino

Adam Tumino

Eastern sophomore Itxaso Aguero battles for a ball with a Tennessee-Martin in a 0-0 draw at Lakeside Field on Sept. 30. The Panthers hold a 4-6-4 record this season.

Adam Tumino, Women's Soccer Reporter

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The Eastern women’s soccer team will be hosting their “Hope for Hannah” match on Thursday against Southeast Missouri in what will be their final home match of the season. 

The match will be honoring Eastern junior and member of the soccer team Hannah Heinz, who has spent the season battling cancer. 

The match is scheduled to kick off at 2 p.m. at Lakeside Field

The team will wear special green socks for the match, and donations will be collected to benefit the St. Jude Clinic in Peoria, where Heinz has undergone treatments.

“We have a lot of gratitude towards that clinic for looking after her the way they have,” head coach Jake Plant said. “Anything we can do to help we want to do.”

Plant also spoke about how the team has rallied behind Heinz during her fight.

“When something like this happens to essentially a sister, it only brings the group together,” Plant said. “(The team) has gotten a massive amount of perspective on what is true resiliency, what is true grit and what is true toughness, which is what Hannah is.”

In her sophomore season last year, Heinz was tied for the team lead with three goals and eight points. 

As for the match itself, Southeast Missouri is currently in 10th place out of 11 OVC teams. They are 1-3-2 in conference play and 3-7-2 overall.

Eastern comes into the match at 4-6-4 overall with a 3-2-2 conference record. They are in fourth place in the OVC. 

The Redhawks are led on offense by junior midfielder Esmie Gonzales. She is tied for seventh in the OVC with five goals. 

She is one of just three Southeast Missouri players to score a goal this season.  

Freshman Morgan McCourt has three goals and junior Jennifer Brien has one. 

Freshman goalkeeper Bailey Redden is one of three goalkeepers to see time in net this season for the Redhawks, but has been the most productive.

She has played in nine matches, starting five, and she leads the OVC with an .824 save percentage. 

Eastern will depart Lakeside Field after the match. 

They may wind up hosting a postseason match depending on the OVC tournament standings. 

They have gone 1-3-3 at home this season, but have played some of their toughest conference opponents there. 

First-place Tennessee-Martin, second-place Murray State and the two teams tied for fourth place, Austin Peay and Belmont, have all visited Eastern this season. 

The Panthers’ next match will be against a non-conference opponent in Fort Wayne on Saturday, Oct. 13.

A pair of conference matches will follow as Eastern travels to play Jacksonville State on Oct. 19 and Tennessee Tech on Oct. 21. 

The OVC tournament begins on Oct. 26, with times and locations still to be determined. 

Adam Tumino can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected]

 

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Women’s soccer team to hold ‘Hope for Hannah’ game in home finale