Oct. 31, 2013
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ATHENS, Ohio - The Ohio University women's soccer team (7-7-5, 3-5-3 MAC) could not hold onto an early lead and fell to Mid-American Conference East Division rival Kent State University (12-7-0, 7-4-0 MAC), 2-1, Thursday in the 2013 regular season finale at Chessa Field.
Despite the loss, the Bobcats finished with their first non-losing regular season since 2009 under the direction of first-year head coach Aaron Rodgers.
Ohio will be the No. 8 seed in the 2013 Mid-American Conference and will travel to Ypsilanti, Mich., to battle No. 1-seeded Eastern Michigan on Sunday in a quarterfinal matchup at Scicluna Field. Kickoff is scheduled for 1 p.m.
"The girls have been training really hard and worked really hard all season and learned so much," said Rodgers. "Now, we just need to put it all together and get the result on Sunday."
The Eagles won the MAC regular season crown by way of a 2-1 win at Western Michigan on Thursday.
Eastern Michigan won the regular season meeting against Ohio, 3-0, on Oct. 18 at Chessa Field.
Ohio jumped out to a 1-0 lead in the ninth minute when junior defender/midfield Tonya Frasik (Lebanon, Ohio) dished the ball to freshman forward Alexis Milesky (Plain City, Ohio), who scored her fourth goal of the season from inside the box. Milesky tied junior forward Liz Finley (Mason, Ohio) and sophomore forward Holly Harris (Batavia, Ohio) for the team lead in goals while Frasik tallied her team-leading sixth helper of the year and second in the last three matches.
The Golden Flashes struck back, though, as senior forward/midfield Jessacca Gironda converted on a penalty kick opportunity in the 18th minute to tie the match.
Gironda found the back of the net again just under nine minutes later, scoring her conference-leading 14th goal of the season to provide Kent State with the winning margin.
"We weren't as attentive to details in the first half as we need to be," said Rodgers. "When you come out and miss some details, good teams will score on you. Details matter. Details are the most important part of being successful."
Ohio lost despite winning the statistical battle in shots (12-10) and corners (11-9).
"We scored a really good goal in the first half, and we actually had a lot of the play in the second half," said Rodgers. "I'm very proud of how our team possessed the ball. We created a rhythm and built attacks. Now, we need to finish those chances."
Senior goalkeeper Mattie Liston (Lakewood, Ohio) finished with four first-half saves for the Bobcats, upping her career total to 398, which ranks fifth in the MAC history. Junior goalkeeper Nicole Amari (Vernon Hills, Ill.) made two saves in the second half and shut the Golden Flashes out over the final 45 minutes of play.