APSU Sports: Women’s Soccer
Clarksville, TN – Austin Peay State University women’s soccer team takes its show on the road for the 10th Annual Port City Classic, in Mobile, AL, beginning with a 4:30pm, Friday match against Troy, before facing host South Alabama, 2:30pm, Sunday.
“We’re excited to play in this event,” head coach Kelley Guth said. “It’s always good to play a couple of good teams because that’s what helps us prepare for the conference season. We matched up against Troy last year at the Trojan Classic and we’re excited to play them again.”The Lady Govs are coming off a three-match week in which they went 2-1, suffering their season’s first loss, Friday, against Western Kentucky. That was the season’s longest homestand and this weekend initiates the season’s longest road trip, totaling four games.
A 5-0 win against Union opened last week’s action, with sophomore Tatiana Ariza tallying her season’s second hat trick. Then came the battle against Western Kentucky, where the Lady Govs only score was courtesy a service by sophomore Emily Kink which sophomore Joceline Quiceno punched past the keeper.
Sunday’s win against Belmont seemed to continue the troubles APSU faced against WKU. However, the Lady Govs were able to offset their poor start with a pair of second-half goals for a come-from-behind win. Tatiana Ariza scored a penalty kick, while Kink assisted on sophomore Natalia Ariza’s gamewinner.
Resiliency will have to be an identifying mark for the Lady Govs, especially after losing several players to injury and being forced to a short bench. Freshmen Bianca Melito and senior Stephanie Weider have both stepped up to aid Kink and sophomore Corey Osborn in the defense.
“We’re still trying to get a couple of players back healthy,” Guth said. “We have to be smart about it and try to get them ready for the conference. We don’t have a deep roster as it is, but we definitely don’t want to want to rush things.”
Offensively, Tatiana and Natalia Ariza have been stellar, along with junior Emily Perkins and Joceline Quiceno. Sophomore Andy Quiceno and Morgan Zigelsky work with junior Jocelyn Murdoch in the midfield, while Renny Robinson also has filled a variety of roles through the early season.
Troy (3-2) picked up a pair of wins at the Troy Classic, last week, including a 7-0 win against Alcorn State. The Trojan losses both came on the road – at Louisiana Tech and at Murray State. Alissa Jones has a team-best four goals, while Chelsey Williams has three goals and one assist. Ashley Branham has started all five games in net, making 18 saves and allowing only two goals.
South Alabama, meanwhile, opens tournament play against winless Presbyterian, 7:00pm, Friday.