Women’s soccer team shows strong team chemistry and leadership as regular season begins


Han Byer

Number 7 Jenna Little, a junior midfielder, celebrates after the women’s soccer team’s first win of the season against the Purdue Fort Wayne Mastodons at Lakeside Field Sunday afternoon. Little had scored two goals within two minutes of each other during the middle of the second half. Little had three shots on goal and played for 56 minutes. The Panthers won 2-0 against the Mastodons.

Kate Stevens, Assistant Sports Editor

The EIU women’s soccer team will rely heavily on its team chemistry, its seniors, and the 5th year players’ leadership this season as it prepares for the start of Ohio Valley Conference play.  

The team consists of 31 players, six of them being seniors, and two of them being 5th year players.  

Head coach Jake Plant said that his seniors are deserving of a winning season because of the hard work and time they put into the soccer program.  

“We’ve got seniors who just deserve to win more because they just put the absolute investment in,” Plant said after last Thursday’s match. 

Plant and his team have six more matches scheduled before OVC play begins at home against Tennessee Tech on Sept. 18.  

The Panthers will face Indiana State, University of Illinois Chicago, Illinois State, Northern Illinois, Central Michigan, and Western Illinois in the next three weeks to help them prepare for the start of the OVC season.  

EIU has played in three exhibition matches as well as two regular season games in which they have shown promise as they approach the OVC season. 

They faced Big 10 school Illinois on Aug. 6 where they left with a 0-5 loss. Next, they played at Illinois Springfield on Aug. 11 where they fell 1-2. In their last exhibition match, they took on IUPUI at home and won the match 2-1.  

On Aug. 18, the Panthers tied with Valparaiso in their home opener where goalkeeper Daniela Bermeo had four saves and on Aug. 21, they went on to beat Purdue Fort Wayne 2-0 as Bermeo recorded eight total saves.  

In the two regular season games the Panthers have played, the seniors have shown their leadership. Four of the seniors, and 5th year players, are starters and have an average of 76.75 minutes played. These players are Bermeo and midfielders Amanda DaSilva, Kenzie Balcerak, and Nicoletta Anuci. 

Junior midfielder Jenna Little has recognized that the team this year has the potential to do well based on the team’s chemistry and ability to step up as one to achieve their common goal of a win. 

Little said after last Sunday’s win versus Purdue Fort Wayne that the team has a chemistry that is helping them flourish this year and that they will continue to do what they have been doing as the season goes forward.  

On Thurs. Aug 24, EIU will head to Memorial Stadium in Terre Haute, Ind., where they will take on Indiana State at 6 p.m.