Just one season after becoming the first Mid-American Conference team to receive an at-large bid in the NCAA tournament, women’s soccer is poised for another successful season.
Here are a few things fans should watch for as the Chippewas search for their second-straight postseason birth and MAC championship:
Senior midfielder Kaely Schlosser is the undisputed leader of the team this year with eight points in 24 shots on goal in 23 games last season. Her vocal style and sheer ability will undoubtedly play a major role in CMU’s success this season.
Junior goalkeeper Grace Labrecque started the Chippewas’ first and only exhibition of the year on Aug. 18 against Michigan State University, and head coach Peter McGahey said fans can expect to see her in goal for the season opener against Detroit. She had a save percentage of .643 in six games played last season.
Sophomore midfielder Eliza Van de Kerkhove was at the top of the list McGahey gave of young players who might make a splash for the Chippewas this season. She played much of the exhibition against MSU and orchestrated several solid runs leading to scoring chances.
Junior forward Laura Goose returns as one of the Chippewas leading scorers from last season. She recorded 11 points last year, including five goals and one assist. Goose was the only player to start all 23 games last season and will look to remain one of the leaders on the team. She is always around the net, having 42 shots on goal last season, good for second on the team.
Friday, Sept. 27: CMU will travel to play Kent State, which was 7-3-1 in MAC play last year, and will look to knock off CMU as the pride of the conference in 2013.
Sunday, Oct. 6: Eastern Michigan comes to Mount Pleasant after an 8-3 season in MAC play last year, while the team will be in the middle of a crucial mid-season home stand as they host their in-state rival.
Friday, Oct. 25: The Chippewas will be in Oxford, Ohio to play Miami of Ohio, which finished 10-0-1 in MAC play a year ago, as the postseason approaches. CMU will look to grab this key road victory as it hopes to be preparing for the NCAA tournament.
The team will once again play a tough non-conference schedule this season with match-ups against Ohio State, West Virginia, Indiana, Pittsburgh, Washington, Detroit and Portland. CMU will play all but two of their non-conference games on the road in preparation for their MAC schedule to begin with the Kent State match.