Freshmen leading women's soccer
Published: Wednesday, August 29, 2012
Updated: Wednesday, August 29, 2012 00:08
After their first ever Atlantic Sun championship, the FGCU women’s soccer team (2-0-1) is off to a strong start.
Leading the charge, are 10 freshmen.
After a slow start, the team came alive with an aggressive second half. Both goals were scored by freshmen Emma Blackwell. Blackwell comes to FGCU as a four-year varsity starter with two high school state championships.
“We’re coming together really well. Obviously we’re a new team, we have ten freshman. We’re kind of taking over the team,” Blackwell said. “Every game we’re getting better and working together better.”
This year’s freshmen- dominant team will face mounting pressure following last years 7-1-1 A-Sun season and an A-Sun championship. Senior Ashley Ciesielczyk, whose breakout junior season ranks her second all-time in FGCU history for assists, helped lead last year’s team to the program’s first ever A-Sun title and feels the effects this season.
“There’s a lot of pressure on us,” Ciesielczyk said. “There are only four seniors, and one can’t play. There’s a lot to live up to. This program started and has a good reputation so far and we just want to keep it going but it’s a lot to live up to having so many freshmen and just four seniors.”
Injury also plagues the team; with four players sidelined with ACL injuries and three others also nursing damaged knees. Despite this early season roadblock, Ciesielczyk is hopeful the team can rally through it.
“We’re doing pretty well so far; we have a lot to improve on,” Ciesielczyk said. “We’re coming together really well as a team even when we’re dealing with injuries right now but its definitely working.”
The team faces FIU on Friday, 7pm at home. The Eagles are 3-1 against the Golden Panthers since 2007.
The Eagles wrapped up the 6th Annual Embassy Suites Classic with a 2-2 draw against Illinois State. Freshman Ally Kasun scored her second goal of the season and junior Kayley Clay gave FGCU a 2-0 lead that they would eventually give up.
Kasun, freshman Shea Rhoney, freshman goal keeper Brittany Brown, Blackwell, sophomore Shannen Wacker were selected to the all-tournament team.