CMU soccer ties Eastern Illinois

University of Michigan forward Claire Dawson (middle) scores her first ever goal at an away game at Central Michigan University on Sept. 4 in Mount Pleasant, Mich.

Leaving the field with a clean slate, Central Michigan soccer heads into Mid-American Conference play after posting a 1-1 draw against Eastern Illinois on Sunday.

Before the Chippewas took action, they recognized two senior midfielders Maggie Basse and Mariana Marcotti for their hard work and dedication to the CMU soccer program. 

“The seniors have done a really good job with leadership and communication and stuff like that, and I think that is something we want them to keep doing,” said head coach Jeremy Groves. “They are probably two of the most vocal on the team. It's been an adverse situation a little bit with obviously only having one or two subs at times. They have been positive and stepped up pretty well and that is something we want them to continue with is the good leadership they have had so far.”  

A lacking spark from the Chippewas (1-5-1) and the Panthers (2-3-2) resulted in a scoreless first half. The Panthers went into the break with most of the control on the grass. EIU had three corner kicks and three shots on goal in the first half. 

“I thought in the first half we were pretty poor,” Groves said. “We didn't get on the ball and play like we wanted to; we didn't defend very well even though they (Eastern Illinois) did not cause that many problems. We didn't play up to the standards we wanted to in the first half.”

Freshman goalkeeper Emma Shingler entered the game to start the second half for junior goalkeeper Kendall Krupiczewicz. Shingler faced nine shots, had two saves and allowed one goal. 

“Emma has started a bunch of games for us, she got a concussion against Wright State, so she was out the last two games,” Groves said. “Both of our goalkeepers right now, I think have done some good things and made some mistakes but for me, it was kind of our last opportunity to see them both before we move into conference (play).” 

At the 52-minute mark, CMU junior forward Elizabeth Chlystun sent in the cross to junior defender Matilda Melin to take a shot and sunk it in the top of the net, giving the Chippewas a 1-0 lead. It was her second goal of the season. 

Carrying momentum from her assist, Chlystun took a shot to the bottom center of the goal but was stymied by the Panthers' senior midfielder Amanda DaSilva. 

“The second half we were much better, we stepped up and started to compete,'' Groves said. “Obviously, scored a decent goal and then could have gotten a second one that got cleared off the line but probably in the end a fair result is 1-1.”

With eight minutes remaining, EIU junior forward Serra Pizano found a gap and placed the ball past a diving Shingler into the left corner to tie the game. 

“We got a couple more bodies back this week as well so hopefully we can start to build on that as we move forward," Groves said. "we have a couple days now before we start conference."

The Chippewas open up MAC play against Eastern Michigan on Thursday, Sept. 22 in Ypsilanti at 4 p.m.