The Kent State soccer team started its second week of Mid-American Conference play with an impressive overtime win on the road Thursday but ended it on Sunday with a frustrating home loss.
The Flashes beat Toledo (7-3-2, 2-2 MAC) 2-1 on a goal five minutes into overtime. Freshman midfielder Alisa Arthur bounced a shot off the post, then followed it up with the game winning goal. Redshirt senior forward Cameron Shedenhelm set up the goal with a pass to Arthur in front of the net. She didn’t get credit for the assist because the goal came on the rebound shot.
“Thursday, we were very good,” coach Rob Marinaro said. “We worked really hard, did a wonderful job creating good opportunities for ourselves and defended extremely well.”
Sophomore forward Callie Cunningham scored the Flashes’ first goal of the game 31 minutes in. Toledo tied the game in the 49th minute.
The Flashes took 10 shots, seven on goal. Toledo took nine shots with four on goal.
On Sunday, the Flashes (6-4-1, 2-1-1) fell 3-2 to Bowling Green (3-5-3, 2-1-1).
“It was just a little bit more of a letdown,” Marinaro said. “I think we played well enough. We just didn’t take care of ourselves defensively as much as we have in the past. We’ll regroup and take a look at what we can do to improve for Thursday.”
The Flashes took an early lead with a goal from redshirt senior defender Karly Hellstrom. Bowling Green tied the game 15 minutes later. Four minutes into the second half, Bowling Green took the lead. The Flashes fought back, and in the 55th minute Shedenhelm scored on a header with an assist from Hellstrom. Bowling Green regained the lead on a penalty kick 72 minutes in.
“We tried to get some possession and see if we can get in behind their defense,” Marinaro said. “They were dropping really quickly and we didn’t do a good enough job. It was a little bit frustrating for us on the offensive side today.”
It was a physical game with KSU committing 15 fouls and Bowling Green 16. Each team had a yellow card.
Marinaro said the Flashes need to improve on their speed of play.
“We were a little slow today,” the coach said. “We’ve got to speed that up, and we need to play an offensive game that’s a lot quicker in order to break their defense down.”
KSU is tied for third place at 2-1-1 in the MAC standings with Buffalo (8-2-1 overall), Bowling Green (3-5-3) and Ball State (4-5-1). Ohio (7-3-1, 3-0-1) and Miami (6-3-3, 3-1) lead the conference.
Marinaro isn’t focusing on the team’s MAC standings.
“We’re taking it one day at a time,” Marinaro said. “Our focus now goes to Thursday’s game against Northern Illinois. We have to give a better performance.”
The Flashes will play NIU (4-8, 1-3) at home at 7 p.m. Thursday.
Cole Oswald is a reporter. Contact him at email@example.com.