As the Kennesaw State University women’s soccer team heads to the home stretch of the Atlantic Sun conference regular season, they’ve got their eyes set on a post-season tournament berth.
PHOTO COURTESY OF ATLANTICSUN.ORG
With the Owl’s history of success under Head Coach Rob King, their record of 5-9 overall and 2-3 in conference play appears below par, but Coach King isn’t worried about that. “I don’t pay a lot of attention to wins and losses, whether we’re winning a ton of games or we’re not,” Coach King told me recently. “What I’m looking for is, are we getting better as a team.”
That was a significant question for the Owls this year because the team is very young. Sixteen players on the roster are freshmen or sophomores. It’s common for KSU to have 5 freshmen on the pitch during a game. King and his staff knew it might take time for the team to come together, but he’s happy with their progress. “They’re getting better each week,” King said. “I’m happy with how they’re learning each other.”
Last week, KSU took first-place Florida Gulf Coast to overtime before losing 2-1. The loss was obviously disappointing for the Owls, but King saw the team’s performance in a positive light. There was very little difference between KSU and the best team in the conference. The Owls played the Eagles tough the entire game and had chances to win it. “I’m pleased at where we are right now,” King said.
KSU followed the FGCU game with two road games: a 1-0 victory over Jacksonville; and a tough 1-0 loss to North Florida – a game the Owls dominated statistically.
The top six teams in the conference standings will advance to the Atlantic Sun post-season tournament. The top 2 teams get a first round bye and the third and fourth teams get to host their first round game.
Kennesaw State is currently in fifth place, with two game left in the regular season. The Owls can’t get the number one seed, but second through fourth places are still within reach.
KSU’s two remaining games are at Northern Kentucky on October 18, and home against USC Upstate at Fifth Third Bank Stadium on Friday, October 24.
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