The Bowling Green State University women's soccer team concludes a three-game road swing this weekend, as the Falcons of interim head coach Kellie Evans take on Valparaiso in the lone match of the week. BG battles the Crusaders on Sunday afternoon (Sept. 9) at Eastgate Field, with kickoff scheduled for 1:00 p.m. local time (2:00 p.m. Eastern).
Live stats for Sunday's match will be available on the web at Valpoathletics.com as well as BGSUFalcons.com. Additionally, the match is scheduled to be broadcast on VU's student radio station, WVUR, and the link to the live stream will also be available at BGSUFalcons.com.
The Falcons are looking to snap a two-match losing streak, as BG dropped a pair of games in St. Paul, Minn., last weekend. The Brown and Orange suffered a 7-0 loss to host Minnesota on Thursday (Aug. 30), then fell by a 2-1 count to Western Kentucky in a neutral-site match on Saturday afternoon (Sept. 1).
In the WKU match, sophomore Sidney Huth scored midway through the second period to cut her team's deficit in half, but BGSU could not get the equalizer. Freshman Demy Whitaker assisted on Huth's goal, her team-leading second assist of the young season.
For the match, BGSU had advantages of 14-9 in total shot attempts – including an 11-5 margin in the second half – and 8-5 in shots on goal.
Junior Tracy Togba leads the Falcons with three points on the year, on a goal and an assist. Junior Madeline Wideman, freshman Jessica Jarvis and Huth each have one goal for two total points, while Whitaker also has two points on the aforementioned two assists.
In goal, fifth-year senior Becca Ison has started all five matches, and has 20 saves and a goals-against average of 2.88 to date. Freshman Jenna Underwood made her collegiate debut in the Minnesota match, playing the last 19-plus minutes.
A total of 17 different players have started at least one match for Evans and assistant coach Bubby Leasure this season to date. Five of those players – Ison, Wideman, fifth-year senior Leah Johnson, junior Alyssa Carmack and sophomore Kaylee Draper – have started all five matches this fall.
For the second time in as many years at BG, Draper will play a match against her twin sister. Kelsey Draper is a sophomore at Valparaiso, and like her sister, has started every match for her team this fall. Additionally, both Draper sisters wear uniform number 16.
Valparaiso has a 2-2-1 record heading into a Friday-night (Sept. 7) home match with Western Michigan. The Crusaders have wins over IUPUI and Towson, along with a tie vs. Kent State, this year. VU is looking to snap a two-game losing streak, having dropped road matches against DePaul and Iowa on back-to-back Sundays.
Luisa Desario has two of Valpo's four goals on the young season, and she leads the team with four total points. In goal, Kristen Manski has played every minute to date. She has 17 saves, a GAA of 0.96 and a pair of shutouts. Head coach John Marovich welcomed 15 letterwinners, including seven starters, back from last year's team that went 8-6-5 overall and 4-2-2 in Horizon League play. VU was picked for third in the HL after finishing third in the league standings last fall.
The Falcons lead Valparaiso, 3-1-0, in the all-time series between the teams, but the Crusaders won the most recent meeting. BGSU won the lone prior match in Northwest Indiana, a 2-1 decision in the 1998 season, and the Falcons then captured a 5-1 victory in the return match the following year. BG also posted a 3-0 home win over Valpo in 2002, but the Crusaders downed the Falcons by a 4-0 count at Cochrane Field last year (Sept. 18, 2011).
Following the Valparaiso match, the Falcons return home for the next four matches. BGSU will close the non-conference schedule with matches at Cochrane Field against Illinois State (Sept. 14) and Loyola (Ill.) (Sept. 16), and the Brown and Orange will begin Mid-American Conference play by hosting Ohio (Sept. 21) and Kent State (Sept. 23).
ADDITIONAL FALCON NOTES
• Sophomore Sidney Huth's goal against Western Kentucky was her first of the season, and the third of her career.
• For Huth, the goal was also her first away from home, and her first in a non-conference match since joining the Falcons. The Lebanon, Ohio, native scored goals in wins over Northern Illinois and Eastern Michigan at Cochrane Field last fall, with the latter goal coming in overtime to give the Falcons a 2-1 win.
• Freshman Demy Whitaker had the assist on Huth's goal, for her second helper in a three-game span. Whitaker also had an assist on junior Madeline Wideman's goal vs. IUPUI.
• Head coach Kellie Evans and assistant coach Bubby Leasure have used the bench liberally in the first five matches. A total of 21 different players saw action in the Michigan State match, and 20 Falcons got onto the pitch against both Cleveland State and IUPUI. Last weekend, all 22 players who made the trip to Minnesota got into the match against the Golden Gophers, and 19 of those players got onto the pitch against Western Kentucky.
• Freshman Haley Parkinson made the first start of her collegiate career vs. Minnesota, and also was in the starting XI against Western Kentucky. Junior Tracy Togba made her first start of 2012 in the latter match, making it a total of 17 different Falcons who have started at least one match this season to date.