WKU Soccer dominate Union in home opener

Rob Holmes IV, Soccer Reporter

WKU Soccer dominated Union University 5-0 in the red and white’s home opener at WKU’s Soccer Complex Saturday night. The Lady Toppers delivered a stellar bounce-back performance after dropping the season opener away at Xavier.

The Lady Toppers were locked in on the defensive side of the ball the entire night. Head coach Jason Neidell’s squad held Union to only two shots on goal for the entire game.

WKU played a disciplined brand of ball, not allowing any corner kicks for Union. The Lady Toppers out-shot the Bulldogs 27-2 and were awarded 12 corner kicks. WKU kept the pressure on Union’s net  all game – 16 of its 27 shots were on goal. 

“I think there was a pretty big commitment to team defending tonight,” Neidell said. “That’s something that we take a lot of pride in, hopefully we’ll see it all season.”

WKU controlled the game from the opening kick. WKU sophomore forward Brook Sleeva started the game with a goal in the 15th minute. That was followed up with a tough goal through traffic by her teammate, sophomore Kayla Meyer. 

Union couldn’t seem to get any momentum on its side and a lot of that credit goes to the defensive masterclass put on by the Lady Toppers. The score stood 2-0 at halftime.

The second half started off pretty slow for both squads, but WKU picked up right where they left off when Senior Forward Katie Erwin scored a goal after a perfect pass from Junior Forward Lily Rummo.

WKU scored three goals in the second half to blow the game open and extend the final score to 5-0. Freshman Avery Christopher and redshirt freshman Anna Isger scored back-to-back goals to wrap it up. Both were set up by great passes from junior Lily Rummo and freshman Olivia Kucharyski.

“I think we just came out and knew what we had to do,” Meyer said. “We put our best foot down and ultimately won and scored five goals. We did a really good job of not letting them get past our defensive line.”

WKU’s next matchup will be against the Vanderbilt Commodores Wednesday, Aug. 25 at 7 p.m. CT at the Vanderbilt Soccer Complex.