WKU not intimidated by SEC opponent Vanderbilt

The Lady Toppers kneel in prayer before their season opener Friday against Western Carolina at the WKU Soccer Complex. WKU heads to Nashville to face Vanderbilt on Friday in what will be their first road game of the season.  

Austin Lanter

After a weekend of home matches to begin the season,

the Lady Toppers will travel to Nashville on Friday for their first

road game of the season to take on Vanderbilt. 

Vanderbilt comes in with a 1-0 record while WKU has

two wins on the season after hosting and winning the WKU tournament

last weekend.

While this is a road game against an SEC team, Head

Coach Jason Neidell said that his team can definitely compete in

what will be a good test, but said he doesn’t put too much stock in

one particular game. 

He added that this game will be part of the hardest

non-conference schedule that WKU has had in 11 years, but he likes

his team’s drive so far this season.

“I think we are going to play well tomorrow night,”

Neidell said. “Our kids have great heart and they have shown

themselves to be true competitors so far.”

Senior forward Amanda Buechel agreed with the fact

that the team will be capable of competing with Vanderbilt and is

really looking forward to the game.

“I think it will be hard,” Buechel said. “I like the

atmosphere though; I think it will be a good atmosphere. It will be

a good challenge, but I think that we are completely capable of


The Lady Toppers have already had success this season

on both the offensive and defensive sides of the ball, scoring four

goals in two games while only allowing one.

They’ll look to continue that success tomorrow night.

In order to do so, Neidell said defense and simply competing were

focal points in practice this week.

After last weekend’s games against Western Carolina

and Ball State, Neidell said a lot of time in practice has been

spent on working on the defense in the midfield in preparation for

Saturday’s game.

Freshman forward Leslie Chinn said more specifically,

they players worked on “group defending” 

“That is our big thing — going (to defend) as a group

and not getting split up,” she said.

Chinn is also looking forward to her first game road

game, especially since it’s against an SEC team.

“I’ll definitely see if I really belong here and if I

can really play with these girls,” she said.

The main goal for the team in tomorrow night’s match

is to focus on the details and the “little things.”

“We obviously want to win the game, but at this part

in the season, we are just really thinking about improving every

day we step out, either in training or games,” Neidell said. “That

is the goal for tomorrow — to make sure we are a better team after

90 minutes than when we started.”