Lady Toppers hope to get out of slump in homestand

WKU junior defender Alanna Clancy (22) stands in the way of a Charlotte player Sunday October 5, 2014 during WKU’s first Conference USA matchup of the season. Despite Clancy’s efforts WKU would go scoreless in a 3-0 loss. Luke Franke/HERALD

John Reecer

The WKU Lady Topper soccer team will continue a five-game homestand having dropped two straight conference games to Old Dominion and Charlotte, respectively.

The Lady Toppers (6-4 overall, 1-2 Conference USA) showed promise through the first half of their match against Old Dominion before shots were limited to a near minimum with the Lady Monarchs. In a double overtime victory over WKU, Old Dominion dominated the shot category 20-8.

That trend carried over into WKU’s 3-0 home loss to Charlotte with the 49ers scoring three goals in the second half with 12 shot attempts against WKU’s six.

“We are a young team and we are still trying to figure things out,” Head Coach Jason Neidell said. “We played a very good first half against Old Dominion, and the second half for whatever reason we came out flat and they were all over us.”

Against Old Dominion, WKU jumped out to an early 1-0 lead when junior forward Lauren Moats scored in the 35th minute off an assist from Kelly Phipps. The sophomore forward centered the ball into the box for Moats to score her fifth goal of the season and her 15th of her career, moving Moats to eighth place all-time in goals scored in WKU history.

However, the second half proved to be a different story for the Lady Toppers as Old Dominion managed to attempt 12 shots in the half to WKU’s five, resulting in a score for the Lady Monarchs in the 57th minute of action.

Old Dominion kicked the game-winner in the second overtime with under two minutes to play via a Devin Dougherty corner kick served to Madison Hogan.

WKU failed to capitalize off a one-man advantage in the 51st minute when ODU goalkeeper Erin Kinz was ejected from the match.

“Their goalkeeper actually got red-carded and instead of that pushing us up, we actually relaxed more and it was a critical turning point in the game,” Neidell said. “Their motivation went up and we were under pressure the whole second half.”

The Lady Toppers sang the same song against Charlotte:  a great first half showing followed by a mistake-riddled second half.

WKU allowed Charlotte to score three goals during a 14-minute stretch in the second half, resulting in a shutout of the Lady Toppers.

“Overall, we played well this weekend,” senior midfielder Allie Auscherman said. “We just have to make fewer mistakes as the competition level increases.”

WKU returns to action Friday at home against UTEP at 6 p.m. CT at the WKU Soccer Complex.