The Lady Toppers (2-1), (1-0, C-USA) resumed action this week against their rival MTSU (0-1), (0-1, C-USA). The Lady Toppers carried momentum into Friday’s game after taking down Southern Illinois last week 4-0.
WKU claimed their first Conference USA win of the season 3-1 over the Blue Raiders.
Senior captain Avery Jacobsen notched her first goal of the season helping her squad to victory over the MTSU Blue Raiders. The defender had an assist last week at Southern Illinois and earned C-USA Defensive Player of the Week honors.
Over the course of the two programs’ history, the Lady Toppers and the Blue Raiders have met 19 times. WKU leads the all-time series 7-6-6 over the Blue Raiders. Last time out the Lady Toppers faced the Blue Raiders on Sept. 1, 2019, and won the matchup 1-0.
WKU’s sophomore goalkeeper Ashley Kobylinski started off hot on defense, saving a shot two minutes into the game. Junior midfielder Ambere Barnett got a clean shot at six minutes, but MTSU sophomore goalkeeper Hannah Suder came up with the save.
Jabobsen continued her role as she notched the Lady Toppers’ first goal of the game at the 16-minute mark of the first half.
The intensity of the Lady Toppers and Blue Raiders rivalry was really showing as there was a yellow card issued at 33 minutes on an MTSU redshirt senior midfielder Annica Fletemeyer. Another yellow card was issued to WKU forward Chelsea Moore at 38 minutes.
Other than the lone goal by Jacobsen, it was an intense defensive battle between the two.
Barnett attempted another shot before halftime at 43 minutes, but Suder came up with her second save of the game for the Blue Raiders.
The Lady Toppers’ defense was playing lights out in the first half, and they were able to maintain their 1-0 lead going into the half. The first half consisted of shot after shot being taken, and both teams played a very physical game.
The yellow cards continued to pile in the second half. MTSU redshirt senior forward Sam DeBien got one at 50 minutes, and at 51 minutes WKU’s freshman midfielder Brina Micheels got one. The matchup continued to be a very physical one.
Barnett at 50 minutes in scored off an assist from Jacobsen to give the Lady Toppers a 2-0 lead against the Blue Raiders. This score gave Barnett her second goal of the season, and Jacobsen’s assist gave her two on the season.
The Lady Toppers continued to lay into the Blue Raiders with sophomore forward Ansley Cate’s goal off an assist from sophomore midfielder Sydney Ernst. Cate’s first goal of the season gave the Lady Toppers a 3-0 lead, and Ernst grabbed her third assist of her career on the Hill.
The Blue Raiders refused to go out silently, and at 86 minutes senior forward Peyton Depriest cut into WKU’s lead scoring off an assist from Debien. Depriest notched her first goal of the season, and Debein got her first assist on the season.
The Lady Toppers showed out strong again as their defense continued to play at a high level.
Jacobsen had another great showing with one goal and an assist. Barnett notched her second goal of the season.
Up next the Lady Toppers will continue conference play at the WKU Soccer Complex against FIU on March 4 at 6 p.m.
Soccer beat reporter Ian Fleischman can be reached at [email protected] Follow him on Twitter @ian_fleischman.