Finley’s second-half strike guides Bobcats past Penguins

Aaron Rodgers and his team have accomplished many firsts this season. The Ohio women’s soccer team achieved their first win against Eastern Kentucky, recorded their first home win against Morehead State and now, the Bobcats can add first shutout of the season to that list of accomplishments.

Liz Finley’s goal midway through the second half lifted the Ohio Bobcats (4-2-1) to a narrow 1-0 victory against the Youngstown State Penguins (1-5-1) at Farmers National Bank Field on Friday evening.

With the win the Bobcats maintained their perfect road record. The goal was Finley’s first of the campaign.

Ohio was able to out-shoot its opposition. The Bobcats held a 12-8 advantage in shots, but both the Bobcats and Penguins executed four corner kicks.

Starting goalkeepers Mattie Liston and Katie Montgomery had five saves apiece in the match.

Youngstown State’s Katie Hohmann started with two corner kicks early in the match, and the Penguins were unable to take advantage of the early opportunities.

On 14 minutes, Finley had a chance to give the Bobcats the lead. The junior’s shot was saved by Montgomery.

One minute later, Kearsten Sego tested her luck at goal, but Liston kept the ball out of the net.

Just 29 seconds later, Liston was put to the test again, this time by Chelsey Haney, but the senior stopper responded to the challenge with another save.

The Penguins’ best chance came in the 33rd minute. Allison Ludwig got her head on the ball, and the ball struck the post but stayed out of the goal.

Hohmann tried to make something happen with another corner kick in the 44th-minute, but nothing came out of it and the score was tied at zero going into the break.

After 45 minutes of play, the Penguins held a 4-2 advantage in shots and a 4-0 edge in corner kicks. Mattie Liston made two saves for Ohio in the first stanza.

At the beginning of the second half, Ohio came out the strong. Freshman starlet Alexis Milesky had a header attempt saved by Montgomery.

Milesky and Tonya Frasik saw shots go wide in the middle of the second half. But Frasik did make up for it in the 66th minute. Off a corner kick, the ball fell to Finley, and the forward’s attempt at goal found the back of the net, which put the Penguins under pressure to find an equalizer.

In a span of four minutes, Liston made three saves. First, Liston denied Hohmann, then Karlee Kline saw her attempt at goal get stopped by Liston and in the 75th-minute, Ludwig tried to level the proceedings, but Liston again stood tall to make the stop.

Frasik had two chances to put the game to bed for the Green and White. On 79 minutes, the junior took a shot at goal, and Montgomery kept the deficit at one. With four minutes to go in the contest, Frasik’s shot was again saved by Montgomery.

Youngstown State did not create a final opportunity to score, and the Bobcats will now have a week to prepare for their final non-conference match of the season.

The Ohio women’s soccer team will be looking to make it five wins in a row when they travel to Cleveland to face off against Cleveland State on Sept. 20. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m.

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