Women’s Soccer Win | Graphic by Monica Brutto | The Wright State Guardian
The Wright State University women’s soccer team welcomed the University of Akron for its last non-conference match of the season this past Sunday.
Ahead of the match
Coming into Sunday’s non-conference finale, the Raiders held a record of 1-3-2 after falling to the University of Dayton 3-0 last weekend. The Akron Zips and the Raiders had previously faced off two times with each team claiming victory once. Sunday’s match would decide who took the all-time series lead.
The Raiders found their footing on offense quickly, putting up six shots in the first half. WSU would find its first goal in minute 25, as freshman Sophia Kuerze netted her first career goal after rushing the keeper and forcing a mistake.
“I knew it was my time to press, and I got a foot on it, tackled, and there it went,” Kuerze stated on her first collegiate goal.
Kuerze’s goal marked the first in three games for the Raiders after finishing with three consecutive shutouts.
Akron would quickly respond after securing the ball after a save and putting it back in the net for a match-tying goal.
The two teams would find themselves tied 1-1 at halftime. WSU looked to transition a good first half into a complete performance in the second half.
The Raiders matched their total shots from the first half in the second half by recording six more shots.
In minute 73, WSU would claim the leading goal after Kuerze crossed a ball into the box that senior Marcella Sizer finished with a header. The goal would mark the second on the season for Sizer, good for the team lead.
“We have been working on getting back post and getting those balls in,” Sizer said. “Both of these goals felt really good because it is what we have been working on all year.”
The Raiders would hang on to secure a 2-1 victory and gain momentum heading into Horizon League play. In the Horizon League preseason polls, the Raiders were selected to finish in seventh place, despite having a tough non-conference schedule to prepare the team for HL play.
“I love being the underdog because I love proving people wrong,” Sizer added following the win. “I can’t wait to start conference because our schedule has been tough and we are getting ready for these games.”
The Raiders relied on physicality and defensive pressure that led to success on the offensive side. This style of play will dictate how this team performs down the road.
“Those effort plays are the difference between winning games and losing games at times,” coach Travis Sobers mentioned. “If we can play that way consistently, then our soccer will speak for itself.”
The Raiders will open HL play on Thursday as the team travels to play against Green Bay at 5 p.m. Viewers can watch the action on ESPN+.