Women’s Soccer Hits Home Stretch Of The Season

Women’s Soccer Hits Home Stretch Of The Season

Eastern Illinois (3-7-2 / 1-2-1 OVC) at Southeast Missouri (4-8, 1-3 OVC)

Thursday, October 14

6 pm at Cape Girardeau, Mo.   

Watch on ESPN+  |  Live Stats

Eastern Illinois vs. Belmont (6-5-1, 3-1 OVC)

Sunday, October 117

1 pm at Lakeside Field (Charleston, Ill.)   

Watch on ESPN+  |  Live Stats

 

ON-TAP: Eastern Illinois hits the home stretch of the 2021 season as the Panthers have four regular season matches remaining.  EIU will travel to Southeast Missouri on Thursday before hosting Belmont on Sunday afternoon.   EIU played one and a half matches last week falling in overtime on Sunday at Tennessee Tech.  EIU’s weekday match with SIUE was postponed due to weather after one half was completed.   EIU enters the week at 3-7-2 overall, 1-2-1 in the OVC.   Southeast Missouri enters the week at 4-8 overall, 1-3 in the OVC.   Belmont is 6-5-1 overall, 3-1 in the OVC. 

 

SENIOR DAY: Eastern Illinois will host Belmont on Sunday afternoon and will honor seven players prior to the start of the match.   Playing in their final contests for EIU will be Eva Munoz, Itxaso Aguero, Pilar Barrio, Niondina Nystrom, Amanda DaSilva, Lauren Frick and Daniela Bermeo

 

FALLING IN OT: Eastern Illinois lost on Sunday 1-0 in double overtime at Tennessee Tech.  The Golden Eagles goal came on a penalty kick in the 104th minute.  It was the second overtime match this season for EIU as the Panthers played to a 1-1 draw with Morehead State.   EIU has now played 11 overtime matches in the last three seasons with a 1-4-6 record in those contests. 

 

MATCH RESCHEDULED: Eastern Illinois will have one additional home match on the schedule as the Panthers will host SIUE on Tuesday, Oct. 19 at 3 p.m.  The contest will serve as a make-up contest after the match between the two schools on Oct. 7 could not be finished due to weather.  In that match SIUE was leading 2-0 at the half when severe thunderstorms prohibited the completion of the match.  The contest will start as a new match and be played as a full, regulation match.

 

STAT LEADERS: Eastern Illinois has four regular season matches remaining on the schedule.   Currently five players have scored goals this season with Zenaya Barnes the team leader with three goals.  Nicoletta Anuci and Serra Pizano are second on the team with two goals each.   Michaela Danyo is the team leader with three assists with Kenzie Balcerak the only other EIU player with multiple assists this season.   A total of eight Panthers have assisted on EIU goals this season.

 

BARNES WINS OVC PLAYER OF THE WEEK HONORS (Oct. 5):  Zenaya Barnes had a brace in EIU’s Oct. 3 win over Murray State with her second goal of the contest serving as the match winner.   Barnes now has three goals to lead the Panthers in scoring with her three goals ranking 7th in the OVC this season.   She was the second EIU player to score two goals in a match this season joining Nicoletta Anuci with a pair of goals against Illinois Springfield.   The last EIU player to win OVC Offensive Player of the Week honors was Kate Olson in 2017.

 

BALCERAK WINS OVC DEFENDER OF THE WEEK HONORS (Oct. 5): Kenzie Balcerak was named the OVC Defensive Player of the Week following her efforts during 180 minutes on the pitch in the Panthers games against UT Martin and Murray State. She would come forward and assist on two of the Panthers three goals during the week.  The last EIU player to win OVC Defensive Player of the Week honors was Lindsey Carlson in 2018. 

 

DANYO ON THE ASSIST: Michaela Danyo helped assist on both of Zenaya Barnes goals in the win over Murray State.  Danyo currently leads the Panthers with three assists this year which ranks tied for third in the OVC.   She is third on the Panthers team in points with five adding a goal in the win over Illinois Springfield.  Danyo’s other assist this year was in the home win over Chicago State. 

 

2021 SPRING HONORS: Eastern Illinois women’s soccer won the OVC Sportsmanship Award for women’s soccer during the 2020-21 season which was played as a league-only slate of contests in the spring of 2021.  It marked the second time in the last three years that the Panthers have won the award under head coach Jake Plant.  In addition Itxaso Aguero was named a second team All-OVC selection for her play during the spring. 

 

EIU POSTS THIRD SHUTOUT OF THE SEASON: Eastern Illinois posted its third shutout of the season with a 1-0 win over Chicago State.  In the match goalkeeper Faith Davies had a clean sheet but a good bit of the credit goes to the Panthers back line as EIU did not allow CSU to attempt a shot on goal.  The back line included Eva MunozMorgan Rinker and Sarah Hagg who all played the complete 90 minutes on the field.  Mara Kades started in the back row but was replaced by Lauren Frick following an injury. 

 

FIFTH YEAR LEADERS: Eastern Illinois had three players take advantage of the extra year of eligibility granted by the NCAA due to COVID-19 impacting the fall season in 2020.  EIU returns fifth year players Itxaso AgueroPilar Barrio and Eva Munoz.  All three players who are originally from Spain will be returning after starting matches in each of the previous four seasons.

 

THREE A MAGIC NUMBER: Eastern Illinois scored three goals during its Aug. 22 win over Illinois Springfield.  It was the sixth time in the last four seasons that EIU has scored three goals in a match, the Panthers posting a 6-0 record in those contests.  EIU’s last three goal match was last spring with a 3-2 win over Jacksonville State on March 30.

SERIES HISTORY: This will be the 26th meeting between Eastern Illinois and Southeast Missouri with the all-time series tied between the two schools 11-11-3.  SEMO has won the last two matches in the series.  EIU’s last win in Cape Girardeau was 2003.  This will be the 12th meeting between Eastern Illinois and Belmont.  The Bruins have won seven straight in the series and hold an 8-3 all-time edge.

 

NEXT UP: Following this week’s matches against Southeast Missouri and Belmont, Eastern Illinois will wrap up the regular season next week with a pair of matches.   EIU will face SIUE in a rescheduled match after their Oct. 7 contest was postponed due to weather.  EIU then travels to Austin Peay on Oct. 21 for their final regular season contest.

HEAD COACH: Jake Plant enters his fourth season as the head coach of the Eastern Illinois women’s soccer team.  A 2014 EIU alumnus and former member of the Panthers men’s soccer program, Plant was the assistant coach for both the men’s and women’s program for two years with one additional season as an assistant for the men’s program before being named EIU women’s head coach in 2018.  Plant led EIU to a 6-8-6 record in his first season including a 4-3-3 record in OVC play.  In 2019, he once again took EIU to the OVC Tournament winning a first-round match.  He enters his fourth season with a record of 12-25-11 with an 8-15-7 record in OVC matches.  He is a native of Birmingham, England.  He is assisted by Dirk Bennett


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