Soccer: Ohio to face Central Michigan and Toledo

The Ohio Bobcats will face Central Michigan in Mount Pleasant, Michigan, on Friday at 3 p.m. before hosting Toledo on Sunday at 1 p.m.

“The next three games are massive,” Ohio coach Aaron Rodgers said. “This is the difference between us making the MAC Tournament and not making the MAC Tournament. We’ve got to get maximum points out of these games.”

Ohio is looking to bounce back after losing two close games this past weekend on the road against Bowling Green and Eastern Michigan, both by a score of 2-1. Against Bowling Green, freshman center back Megan Niebuhr scored an early goal for the Bobcats, but the Falcons rallied in the second half with goals by Madison Schupbach and Leah Runkle. At Eastern Michigan, a game-winner by Eastern Michigan’s Chelsie Oddan lifted the Eagles to victory.

“It was a little disappointing on Friday,” Rodgers said. “We dominated statistically. We didn’t show the effort, desire and passion to win that Bowling Green did and that’s what carried them to the win. I think Sunday we had a better effort. Our energy was a little bit better and Eastern’s a really good team, and they scored a fantastic game-winner with six minutes left.”

The Bobcats (6-10, 3-5 MAC) are led by sophomore Alexis Milesky, who has recorded four goals this season, including three game-winning goals, and has 10 points. Goalkeeper Nicole Amari is third in the MAC in saves with 83.

In its last meeting, Ohio lost to Central Michigan, 2-1, at Chessa Field. Goals by Emily Cooskey and Kaelyn Korte helped the Chippewas to victory. The Bobcats faced Toledo last year on the road. A late goal by Ohio striker Holly Harris lifted the Bobcats to a 2-1 victory against the Rockets.

Central Michigan (4-11-1, 2-6 MAC) is coming off a 3-0 victory against Akron on Sunday behind Kaelyn Korte’s two goals. Senior Laura Gosse leads the Chippewas this season with six goals and 12 points. Goalkeeper Maddy Bunnell is second in the MAC in saves per game with 5.82.

Toledo (6-9-1, 3-5 MAC) fell to Buffalo this weekend by a score of 3-0. Junior midfielder Geri Siudzinski, who has three game-winning goals, and eight points this season, leads the Rockets. Goalkeeper Sam Tiongson is fifth in the MAC in saves with 68.

“To win we just have to put in the work,” Milesky said. “We can beat anybody we play. We just have to put in the work and fight for 90 minutes.”

The Bobcats conclude their regular season next Thursday against Kent State at 3 p.m. at Chessa Field. But first, they will be trying to take care of business against Central Michigan and Toledo.

“The next three teams are in the same position we are,” he said. “This is not going to come down to tactics. It’s not going to come down to anything but sheer will, passion and desire to get in the MAC Tournament. It’s about who is going to go out there and be willing to give everything they have and have more will to win than the other team, not just be able to run faster, not just run harder, but pay more attention to details and if we do that we’ll be successful.”

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