Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Takin' Names and Boostin' Stats!

Belmont Women’s Soccer at the moment is alone at the top & fighting to hold on, in Atlantic Sun rankings. We went 3-0 this week with a 4-0 conference record heading into what will probably be the most challenging weekend for conference play yet….

The Battle of the Blvd. on Tuesday night was another one of our “switch-flipping” type games. We escaped after the first half with a 0-0 tie & once again Lipscomb was knocking on history’s door with force. (Belmont has yet to lose to Lipscomb in a Women’s Soccer game.) With that fear in mind & a few great tackles by Patience Whitten & Dani Stolt late in the first half, our spark ignited. We scored two goals (Jtro and Annie) to beat them 2-0. Our depth is by far our GREATEST aspect & energetic subs is not the only thing I mean when I mention using our whole roster to win games. Lisa pointed out another reason we won. Those teammates who could not dress/sit on the bench with us for this game (because of the A-Sun rule about only 22 players on the road) sat on the wall behind the goal. This was the goal where we were scored on twice last year. Lipscomb fans sat there, yelled & harassed our defenders. So this year, our girls sat there, attracted other BU fans, & turned our weakness into our strength. We scored both our goals on that end of the field. Most teams win games with 11…we win with 27.

Another random practicing this week, having our day-after-game and day-before-game light practice. This is a hard schedule for people who aren’t playing 90 min. to adjust to & difficult to work on things in this time, but that’s how the cookie crumbles. ETSU was a revenge game & we needed to be focused. They were 1 of only 3 conference teams to beat us last year & we made sure they remembered that by beating them at home Friday night 1-0. Jamie Loftis (Lofty) scored on a beautiful header for the game winner! Lofty worked with Alex Morgado (Gado) on finishing crosses & when the Birthday girl “south-paw”, Gretchen Sutch, sent her own gift into the box, Lofty put it in the back of the net. Practice makes perfect. After, the girls drank their usual post-game chocolate milk & got ready for Sunday.

USC Upstate came to town. We weren’t very friendly… we sent them home with a 6-1 result. You might think winning a game by this margin makes it unimportant, but it means a lot to not play down to an opponent. We respected the heart of Upstate enough to keep attacking & playing smart soccer, because if we didn’t the result would’ve been closer. This weekend we matured a lot in an area where we usually miss our mark. We finished chances & had goals from 5 different people! Our talent is incredible! We used our depth not only with field players, but with Goalkeepers as well. This is the first game all 3 GKs contributed to the win. Granted, I was the one to get scored on and let our shutout slip away , but we as a “Tribe/Tripod” performed well overall for our Chief, Coach Kyle. Sari, Ashley Hudak (Hootie), & I like to refer ourselves as this because in soccer, GKs spend a lot of time with each other away from the team. In a game, GK is the loneliest position on the field, so in practice we like having the support of 2 other people. Kyle is our Chief and he makes it near impossible to be invited into the Tribe. Alex Mindel came the closest, becoming an honorary member when she was injured in the spring, but never made it to actual Tripod status. Sorry guys. It’s a tough club join. You need to know things like the capital of South Dakota…In the tribe the answer to that question is ‘Piedmont’

I’ll end with some shoutouts: Sari Lin for the second time in her career was A-Sun Defensive Player of the Week & actually had her first career assist! That’s right…GK’s boostin’ offensive stats! Congrats Sari!! Also, Happy Birthday this week to Lauren Trappey, Gretchen, Marcela Sanchez, and Alex Morgado! Jane Owen Robbins made a lot of cookie birthday cakes this week, so maybe if you read this blog soon enough, you can still grab a slice! This week we play 2 teams we beat in PK’s to win the tournament last year: Mercer and Kennesaw St. They will be out for blood!…How will we fair in the big G A ? TBD….GRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR
- R. P. #0

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