Lady Tops return home after lengthy road-swing

WKU’s forward Hannah Cady (20) collides with Valparaiso’s Sydney Gountounas (14) during the Lady Toppers’ 2-2 tied game against the Crusaders on Sunday at WKU’s Preston Complex. 

Hunter Frint

The Lady Toppers will finally have a well-deserved break from their long hours on the road with their first home match of October. The match will be held this Friday at 6 p.m. against Florida International at the WKU Soccer Complex.

However, this home stint won’t last long as WKU will be back on the road over the weekend for a clash with Charlotte on Sunday. 

WKU (6-4-4, 2-2-2 C-USA) has taken two extensive road trips during the past two weekends. It traveled by plane and car to Texas to face UTEP and UTSA, to Tennessee to face Middle Tennessee and to Alabama to take on UAB.

The results of its travels yield two losses, a win and one draw, which make the Lady Toppers look to gain some momentum back on their home turf. 

“It’s been a tough four games on the road for us,” Head Coach Jason Neidell said. “We’re excited to be back at home on Friday night.”

Along with a chance to play in front of a home crowd, Neidell is also looking forward to his team getting some rest while in Bowling Green. 

“We’ve spent eight of the last 11 days on the road. We’re going to give our kids an extra day off this week from soccer,” Neidell said. “Hopefully we’ll find that they come back a little bit rejuvenated.”

Florida International (8-7, 4-2 C-USA) travels to Bowling Green after a 2-0 shut-out win over Louisiana Tech this past Sunday. In the match against La. Tech, both teams were scoreless until the 50th minute. The Panthers netted a second goal with less than 10 minutes to play to seal the win. 

The Lady Toppers have already played La. Tech this season with a 1-0 win. The match was WKU’s second of the Conference USA schedule and earned the team its first conference win of 2015.  

WKU will look to keep tabs on juniors Talia McMurtie and Ellen Crist, the two players who netted goals against Louisiana Tech. The goals were McMurtie’s second and Crist’s fourth of the season. 

Another player to keep an eye on is senior Scarlet Montoya, who was awarded C-USA Offensive Player of the Week at the end of last month. 

“They’re another good team,” Neidell said of Florida International, “The Conference USA is a fantastic league in women’s soccer, and we just have another tough game in front of us.”

After their break from the road, the Lady Toppers will be traveling one last time in their regular season to Charlotte, North Carolina, to face off against the Charlotte 49ers.

The 49ers fell to 5-9 on the season and 1-4 in C-USA after a battle against Rice last Sunday ended 2-1 in Rice’s favor. WKU hosted Rice in its first C-USA game of the season and fell to it 3-1.

Charlotte will take on Old Dominion before hosting the match against the Lady Toppers at 1 p.m. on Sunday.