Tech soccer enters Ohio Valley Conference play this weekend with momentum following a win over Lipscomb, in which the Golden Eagles had 23 shots, controlled possession throughout and won 2-1.
Coach Daniel Brizard said going into the game that he hoped his team would be able to get a win, and they were able to do so, getting goals from sophomore Ellie Iaciofano and junior Andrea Meloff. Meloff also had an assist in the game. Brizard said after the win was that it was important for Tech (3-6-1) to gain confidence prior to visiting Eastern Illinois (1-6-2) on the road Friday.
“We needed that confidence boost as a team,” Brizard said. “I think we’ve played well, I just think sometimes the result hasn’t gone our way.
“To actually get the result in terms of playing well and in front of a fantastic home crowd, hopefully it will give us some momentum we can take into this weekend.”
Starting sophomore goalkeeper Becca Toler said the key to so many offensive chances was solid team play.
“We are always strong in the back,” Toler said. “We’ve been working even harder on the attacking third, just being more creative with our forwards and we are very close to becoming a great team.”
Iaciofano said that a slight style change had a big effect on the way the forwards played during the game, which helped her notch her second goal of the season.
“We were playing more through balls, making more runs on the outside,” Iaciofano said. “[When I scored] the ball went over the top to Andrea [Meloff]… I was just giving her an option and she gave me a nice through ball. I struck it; I thought it might go wide, but it hit post and went in.
“We had much more attack in the game [Sunday], and it will give us confidence to score.”
Tech’s two opponents for the weekend are EIU, who Tech tied last year 1-1, and Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville (2-2-1), who is in its first year of official OVC play. Tech and SIUE did not match up last year.
Brizard said last week that his goal for the team was to win conference championships. Iaciofano said a good start was the first step towards that goal. Tech is 8-5-2 all-time in OVC openers.
“We need to start conference off with two good wins,” Iaciofano said. “We are making more chances, executing our chances is what has to happen.
“We just need to capitalize.”
No matter what happened leading up to conference play, Toler said, the time to peak is now.
“It’s a fresh new start… we have confidence. We have business to take care of,” Toler said.
“It starts with this weekend.”
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