OVC women’s soccer teams begin conference schedule this weekend

Oscar Rzodkiewicz, Assistant Sports Editor

The Daily Eastern News
Karina Delgado | The Daily Eastern News
Kenzie Balcerak fends off a defender to gain possession of the ball. Eastern won its first game of the season Sunday against Chicago State 3-1.

The meat of the season is just around the corner as Eastern women’s soccer team gears up for OVC competition.

The Panthers (1-4) hit the road to open conference competition against Tennessee-Martin (2-3-3) Friday at 6 p.m.

After its conference opener against Tennessee-Martin Friday, the Panthers stay on the road for a conference match against Southeast Missouri Sunday.

Eastern’s first home conference match is next Friday, when the Panthers host Eastern Kentucky.

Eastern finally notched its first win over Chicago State Sunday as three different players scored a goal to complete a second-half comeback.

Nicoletta Anuci, Lexi Ketterhagen and Sarah DeWolf were the goal scorers for Eastern in the victory.

The Skyhawks were ranked No. 2 in the preseason OVC coaches poll, but the beginning of their season has been back-and-forth, most recently going winless over the weekend after a loss to Indiana Sept. 12 and a tie with Wright State Sunday.

Tennessee-Martin plays Sunday against Belmont (1-4-2) at 2 p.m. for its second conference match of the season.

Southern Illinois Edwardsville (2-3-1) sits atop the non-conference standings alongside the Skyhawks, and the Cougars get the action started for the OVC in a matchup with Austin Peay (1-4-1) Thursday at 7 p.m.

The Governors got two individual honors after picking up their first win of the season against Evansville, as senior Renee Semaan received the OVC Defensive Player of the Week award while senior Mary Parker Powell took home the OVC Goalkeeper of the Week for her shutout performance.

Austin Peay finishes its weekend slate Saturday with a non-conference match against Cincinnati, while Southern Illinois Edwardsville cleans up with Murray State (3-5) Sunday at 1 p.m.

Speaking of the Racers, a longtime staple of the offense, senior Miyah Watford, received the OVC Offensive Player of the Week honor after her third two-goal performance of the year propelled the team to a win over Arkansas State Sept. 13.

Murray State could not keep the momentum going, though, as the Racers fell to Missouri State despite allowing just one shot on goal.

Morehead State (1-6) is trying to find some traction in the young season after dropping two matches this past week.

The Eagles fell 2-1 to Wright State Sept. 13 before a Sunday matchup against Southern Illinois left them with another tick in the loss column, another 2-1 final score.

Morehead State faces Tennessee Tech (2-4-2) Friday at 7:30 p.m. and stays on the road to suit up against Jacksonville State (3-5) Sunday at 1 p.m.

The Gamecocks, though ranked dead last in the OVC in the preseason, were able to secure a few wins early; they have trailed off since, succumbing to two 3-0 losses to Alabama and Mercer this past weekend.

Jacksonville State takes on Eastern Kentucky (2-6) Friday at 7 p.m. before its date with Morehead State Sunday.

Oscar Rzodkiewicz can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected].