Sun. May 28th, 2023

West Chester Lady Rams Soccer Team (1-3) has been faulting as of late, as they lost twice this weekend to PSAC foes Mercyhurst and Gannon. After starting off their season with a convincing win against Mansfield, the ladies have dropped their past three contests.
The Golden Rams welcomed in Mercyhurst (2-2-1) this past Friday for an afternoon match hoping to bounce back from their previous game against Kutztown. Both teams battled throughout the first half of play with no one capitalizing until the 30 minute when Lexi Brown scored her first goal of the season. The Lakers would not take long as less than 10 minutes later they were able to even the score. Carla Deola was able to tack one on at the end of the half, but that would not be able to save West Chester. The second half would be an onslaught as Mercyhurst scored three consecutive goals and blanked the Golden Rams, handing them their second loss in a row. Goaltender Alex Srolis saved two shots but it was not enough as West Chester fell 4-2.
The next day brought a new opportunity for this youthful squad who would be looking for redemption after the Mercyhurst match. Their test would be PSAC opponent, Gannon (3-1), which the ladies understood would not be an easy task. This game displayed two different aspects that the previous match lacked, including goaltending and defense. West Chester really dug deep and, for the game, only allowed 12 shots on goal, which usually means a win for a team that desperately wanted it. But Gannon’s goaltender, Sarah Geffel, had something to say about what the outcome of the game would be. Geffel faced a tremendous 16 shots on goal and refused to allow any during the match. Combining that with an early 18 minute goal by Justine Rodrigues for the Golden Knights proved too much and West Chester would lose yet again by a 1-0 final score.
Both of these games could have easily swung the other way but we see something that college teams go through every year. Last year’s leaders, Melissa McKeary and Jen Hutchinson, both were graduating seniors and with the amount of freshmen on this year’s team, it is no wonder why their struggling. Young teams go through growing pains during the first part of the year and this is when the coach finds out who can play and who cannot. The effort and talent for this West Chester team is there but learning to play together is a whole other story and without having a season under their belt, it might take some time for this West Chester team to live up to its potential. Juniors Ashley Saylor and Carly Yost both played significant roles on the team last year and are expected to continue that great playing style for this season as well.
As we continue watching this young but talented team, their job does not get any easier as we view the upcoming schedule. Three of West Chester’s next four games are on the road at Lock Haven, East Stroudsburg, and Philadelphia University with East Stroudsburg sporting a 4-0 mark so far this season. No matter the score though, it is time to sit back and see who decides to take over the team and lead them for the future. The sky is the limit for this team so remember to go out and support them as they further progress their season.
Taylor Maren is a fourth-year student majoring in communication studies. He can be reached at TM 

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