HUNTINGTON, W.Va. — The Ohio soccer team (3-3-0) fell 1-0 to Marshall (2-4-0) after a closely contested 90 minute bout at Hoops Family Field in Huntington, W.Va. on Friday, Sept. 8.
"Good intense game tonight," head coach Aaron Rodgers said. "Marshall was very energetic in the first half and capitalized on a misplay by us. We did everything we could but just couldn't get the equalizer in the end."
Ohio opened the match with a strong defensive presence, forcing the Thundering Herd to play outside. Marshall came out hard, putting bodies down field early and forcing the backline of Katie McCurley (Lake Zurich, Ill.) , Rianna Reese (Liberty Township, Ohio) and Victoria Breeden (Hudson, Ohio) to hold a strong line. Despite the early press, goalkeeper Sydney Malham was able to stop four shots in the first half hour and keep the score 0-0.
Marshall would open scoring in the 33rd minute off a goal from Gabby Powers. Powers received the ball off a low tap from Ashley Seltzer and sent it to the upper 90 to beat Malham.
Ohio attempted to the force an equalizer before halftime came but could only send two shots in before the whistle blew. At halftime, Ohio sat at seven shots, three SOG and five saves to Marshall's 10 shots, six SOG and three saves. Top offensive threat through the first was Allie Curry (Fairfield, Ohio) who recorded two shots, one on goal.
The Bobcats came out strong in the second half, pushing hard into the Thundering Herd's defense.
Hannah Jaggers (Taylorsville, Ky.) registered Ohio's first shot in the second half in the 47th minute but was denied by Marshall's Megan Bonelli. Play continued to go back and forth for the next 10 minutes with Paige Knorr (Cincinnati, Ohio), Jaggers and Courtney Daugerdas (Libertyville, Ill.) sending in attempts but none of them could find the back of the net.
Ohio increased their tempo midway through the second half, sending bodies into the the box but Marshall's defense never gave an opening. Likewise, the Thundering Herd sent in shot after shot in an attempt to cushion their lead but could never work through Ohio's backline defenders.
The Bobcats' strongest attempt in the half came from a 74th minute header off Celeste Fushimi-Karns (Dublin, Ohio). Fushimi-Karns sent a header on frame that looked promising but Bonelli laid out and got a touch on the ball, allowing her defense to clear the threat away.
Ohio continued to press hard, with Daugerdas receiving a yellow card in the 85th after colliding with Bonelli while going up for a high cross but could never produce a goal. Time eventually ran out, giving Marshall the 1-0 victory. Final statline for Ohio was 14 shots, six shots on goal and five saves to Marshall's 16 shots, six shots on goal and six saves.
The Bobcats return on action on Sunday, Sept. 10 when the team hosts the Kentucky Wildcats at 2 p.m. at Chessa Field.