OVC places women’s soccer in seventh for pre-season polls

Kate Stevens, Assistant Sports Editor

The Ohio Valley Conference added teams to the conference which take effect this season, replacing Belmont, Murray State, and Austin Peay with Arkansas-Little Rock, Lindenwood, and Southern Indiana.

The OVC has made its annual preseason picks for where each team will place at the end of the season as well as some players to look out for this year.
The list begins with Southern Illinois University Edwardsville at first place and following behind is UT Martin, Tennessee Tech, Little Rock, Southeast Missouri, Morehead State, Eastern Illinois, Southern Indiana, and in last place is Lindenwood.

Both SIUE and UT Martin are slated to battle for the top position as they both went 6-2 in the OVC last season. UT Martin lost to SIU in the OVC tournament championship last year.
After taking fourth place in the OVC last season, Tennessee Tech is slated to finish in third after going 3-2-3 in OVC play. The third-place team for the 2022 season is up for grabs this as Tennessee Tech had an average season in OVC play in 2021.

The OVC also named nine players to watch this season. They named midfielder Amanda DaSilva (EIU), goalkeeper Sam Blazek (Lindenwood), defender Natalee Geren (Little Rock), goalkeeper Michelle Jerantowski (Morehead State), midfielder Elizabeth Rater (Southeast Missouri), forward Lily Schnieders (SIUE), goalkeeper Maya Etienne (Southern Indiana), forward Chloe Smith (Tennessee Tech), and defender Maria Castaldo (UT Martin).

EIU has shown promise in its preseason and is looking to exceed its 2021 OVC record of 2-5-1. They went 1-2 in their exhibition games and are currently 1-0-1 in the preseason. This record puts EIU at the number one spot currently as Lindenwood, Morehead State, SIUE, Southeast Missouri, and Southern Indiana sit at 1-1 and Little Rock and UT Martin sit at 0-1, and Tennessee Tech at 0-2.

The Panthers have a lot of depth in the roster this season and has had several players shine in the exhibition and preseason matches.

Goalkeeper Daniela Bermeo has recorded two shutouts and 12 saves in the first two preseason games against Valparaiso and Purdue Fort Wayne. Midfielder Jenna Little has recorded both goals scored in the first two preseason games.

The Panthers have six more games in the preseason until they begin OVC play on Sept. 18 at home versus Tennessee Tech.