The sun was shining and not a single cloud was in the sky as Slippery Rock took on West Virginia Wesleyan College at Egli field Thursday, Sept. 2, for a non-conference match. Heading into the season, women’s soccer is projected to win the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference (PSAC) for the second year.
To start, Slippery Rock was sending good kicks to their forwards and had many hard shots on goal. However, the Bobcats struck first with a penalty shot with 19 minutes remaining in the first half. Not long after with 5:55 to go, they scored another goal to give themselves a 2-0 lead going into the second half.
Although The Bobcats had the advantage in goals, Slippery Rock was leading in shots taken by the halfway mark. The 12-4 difference in shots gave The Rock good momentum heading into the end of the game. Emma Yoder, SRU’s goalie, tallied multiple saves throughout the game, which helped give The Rock a solid chance at regaining an even playing field.
Coach Giegucz’s ability to motivate,”[read] energy and get the ball moving,” helped set the tone for The Rock’s first goal. With 39 minutes remaining in the half, Jordyn Minda scored her first goal this season off an assist from Sydney Patrick.
The goal sparked something in the team, as the game became more aggressive. The ball remained in The Rock’s possession most of the time allowing for multiple goal opportunities.
At halftime, Coach Giegucz told the girls that the back fielders needed to drop and play in line with the rest of the team to avoid Bobcat goals. They did exactly that and were able to stop West Virginia Wesleyan from scoring again.
A chance for Slippery Rock to tie the game came off a hard shot ball, but it ending up being called offsides and not counted. That didn’t stop the team from testing the Bobcats goalie, Ally Moore, who had an impressive nine saves. Eventually, the repeated shots at goal paid off. With 1:44 to go, Nina King passed the ball to Rachel Edge, who hammered a goal deep into the left post to tie the game.
After a scoreless attempt from both teams in overtime, the game processed into double overtime. From there, the result was the same and both teams walked away with a tie at 2-2.
Overall, the team led in all categories including corner kicks, shots, and shots on goal. Minda and Edge used seniority to their advantage to help put The Rock back into the game. For West Virginia Wesleyan, Savannah Masterson and Natalie Pireu tallied one goal each.
On Sunday, Sept. 5, The Rock ventured to Fairmont State University for another non-conference game. This time, the end result was a win.
Forward and senior player Edge was named PSAC West Player of the Week following her two goals in the weekend matchups. In her career, this marks her third time being honored with this title.
The next chance to see The Rock in action is Saturday, Sept. 11 vs. Pitt-Johnstown at noon.