The Lady Govs’ soccer team have surpassed many people’s expectations, maybe even their own, this season as they finished the season on an eight-game unbeaten streak, all against Ohio Valley Conference foes, to secure the second seed in the OVC tournament and its second-ever 10 win season.
The Lady Govs got off to a slow start on the season, going 0-2-0 in their first two OVC games, but would spark a fire that helped to carry them all the way to their impressive finish.
On Friday, Oct. 26, the Lady Govs would wrap up their road schedule as they traveled to Morehead State in a pivotal OVC game. The next game on the Govs schedule was Eastern Kentucky, who, at the time, shared second place with APSU, so a win was imperative to keep the teams’ goal of a first-round bye in sight, and the Lady Govs responded.
The Lady Govs would score the games lone goal early in the match when senior Emily Perkins would put the ball in the back of the net in the 20th minute.
The Govs defense was able to hold strong for the remainder of the game. Although the team was outshot in the game, 15-5, only two of the shots were on goal, and junior goalkeeper Haylee Shoaff was able to stop both, securing the 1-0 victory in her sixth shut-out of the season.
On Sunday, Oct. 28, Eastern Ky. and APSU would battle it out in the Lady Govs’ backyard for sole possession of second place and a first-round bye in the OVC tournament. The Lady Govs would stay strong at home, taking the contest and second seed, with a 2-1 victory.
The Lady Govs would start fast, scoring both goals within the first 24 minutes of game time. Junior Tatiana Ariza would score on an assist from Perkins in the 14th minutes, giving the Lady Govs the early lead. The goal was Ariza’s 12th on the season, tying her for second-most goals in a season in school history.
Perkins would tack on another goal 10 minutes later, giving the Lady Govs a little insurance and breathing room for the rest of the match. It was Perkin’s 14th career goal, tying her for third for most goals in a career in school history.
The Lady Govs defense would stay stingy all day before surrendering the Colonel’s only goal late in the 89th minutes, ending a streak of over 380 minutes of not allowing a goal.
Thanks to Lady Govs’ 7-0-1 record during the final eight games of the regular season, the Govs’ will receive a bye in the first round of the OVC tournament on Thursday, Nov. 1, and play on Friday, Nov. 2 at Martin, Tenn., against the winner of Eastern Kentucky and SIU Edwardsville.
Should they win, they will play on Sunday, Nov. 4, against the winner of UT Martin and the Belmont-Southeast Missouri winner. The only team the Lady Govs lost to this season who is playing in the OVC tournament is UT Martin, the tournaments’ top seed.