Women's soccer opens conference play, continues strong season
By MIKEY BARNES
Put the women’s soccer team down as another University of Mary Washington team off to a great start. This season, the Lady Eagles found themselves in the top 25 of national rankings after a 6-1-1 start to their season. After a loss to second ranked Messiah College by a score of 5-0, the Eagles found themselves out of the top 25, but not off pace for a great season.
Following their loss to Messiah, the Lady Eagles took Meredith College into double overtime, where both teams finished in a 1-1 draw. On Wednesday, Sept. 17 the Eagles shut out Randolph-Macon with a score of 1-0, a return to their winning ways. The following Saturday, UMW took on Hood College and produced the same results as they came away victorious in a 1-0 shut out. After those consecutive victories, UMW was taken down by Catholic University, 6-0, on Tuesday, Sept. 23.
As proven by other scenarios in the season, the ladies were able to bounce back from this defeat and take out Marymount University in their first conference match with a score of 3-1.
Junior Jessica Bednarcik started of the scoring for the Lady Eagles in their Marymount defeat, scoring the opening goal in just the ninth minute. Marymount tied it up in the 22nd minute to knot it up at one apiece.
Less than a minute later, off a Leah Roth pass, freshman Taylor Decker scored to take the 2-1 lead. Fellow freshman Anna Manser scored the Eagles’ third goal of the half in the 36th minute to cushion the lead and secure their victory. It was a great start to conference play for the Eagles and another notable victory, including their 2-1 defeat of then nationally ranked Rowan University.
“My goal is for us to win our conference and make it to the NCAA tournament,” said sophomore Meghan Turney.
A NCAA tournament berth and a conference title would be the first of each since 2009 when the ladies finished 12-5-5.
“We have a talented group of girls who can do amazing things for Mary Washington, especially when it comes down to conference play in late October,” Turney said.
The ladies will continue their conference play Wednesday, Oct. 8 at Frostburg Sate and will return home on Oct. 14 against Southern Virginia.