By Matt Poshedley
The Vikings closed out non-conference play on Sept. 10 with an impressive 3-0 victory over Niagara University (NU).
Their fourth win of the season came at the end of a three games in five nights stretch in which the Vikings defeated Canisius College 2-0 and suffered a 2-0 loss to the University of Toledo.
A big part of the victory over NU was the three saves by goalie Jamie Daniels. She now ranks fourth in school history in saves and third in school history in shut outs.
“If we have the success that we hope to have in these nine games, it’ll mean we posted four or five more shutouts along the way,” Dallas Boyer, head coach of the Cleveland State University women’s soccer team said. “As a result, she’ll continue to climb all those standings.”
Stopping goals is important, but so is scoring them. Freshman forward Jenna Prathapa made sure she did just that with her two goals in the win over NU, which gives her five total goals so far this season.
“It’ll be interesting to see what we can continue to do around her and allow her to still be interesting,” Boyer said. “We’re going to have to have some more dynamic players around her continue to be affective and I think we’ll get that.”
The Vikings currently have a 4-5 record, but their shut-out win to end non-conference play has this team even more excited for their first conference game against Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI) on Sept. 15 at 7 p.m.
IUPUI is the newcomer to the Horizon League this year. They currently have a 5-3 record and are on a four-game winning streak.
“This will be the least predicable and the hardest to prepare for game,” Boyer said. “We have an idea of what everyone else kind of does and film from previous years that we don’t have for an opponent like this.”
The Vikings really hope to go into Indianapolis and end IUPUI’s winning streak. The Vikings have a chance to increase their shots per game since IUPUI is giving up an average of 15.1 per game.
With the build-up of the nine non-conference games, the Vikings feel like they’re right where they need to be before conference play starts on Sept. 15.
Boyer has his team focused and rested for the start of conference play the way he would like.
“Getting two shutout wins and playing well in a loss against a good Toledo team has us pretty excited for this week,” Boyer said. “It’s all the cliche stuff, we just have to take this one game at a time and try to accumulate as many points as we can to get into a tournament and take it from there.”