SMC Soccer: Saint Mary’s seeks first conference win
Meredith Kelly | Tuesday, September 17, 2013
After a hard 4-0 loss to Alma on Saturday, the Belles hope to bounce back and take on Calvin at home today at 4 p.m.
Last Saturday, the Belles (2-4, 0-2 MIAA) lost 4-0 to Alma (3-3, 3-0 MIAA), which is ranked No. 1 in the MIAA.
Belles head coach Michael Joyce said since the loss to Alma, the team has been working on controlling the pace of the game and keeping possession, both elements the team was lacking Saturday.
“From Alma, we learned that if we don’t play our game, we are in trouble,” Joyce said. “We’ll look for a fast start.”
Joyce said although Calvin (4-1, 1-1 MIAA) has been ranked as high as No. 19 in the country this year, he believes the Belles are prepared to win but must do everything right in order to succeed.
Joyce said he is looking toward his midfielders, sophomore Kathryn Lueking, senior captain Mollie Valencia and sophomore Maggie McLaughlin to step up and have a great performance Wednesday.
“We had trouble controlling the midfield last year in our second meeting with Calvin, so these three will have to play well for us to be effective,” Joyce said.
The Belles will host Calvin for their second home game of the season.
“Playing at home is a huge advantage,” Joyce said. “We’ve had five of our first six games on the road and we love our field and always are at our best on it.”
For Saint Mary’s, the pressure is on. Currently, the Belles are placed seventh in the MIAA while Calvin is placed fifth. The Belles will need to finish their conference season in the top four in order to qualify for the post-season tournament.
“Being 0-2 and looking for out first conference win is certainly motivation, but more than that, I think the team is motivated to perform our best, which we haven’t done yet,” Joyce said.
The Belles will kick off at 4 p.m. today at home against Calvin.
Contact Meredith Kelly at email@example.com