BOWLING GREEN, Ky. – WKU Soccer will close out the 2018 regular season on Friday
evening at 6 p.m. against Marshall at the WKU Soccer Complex, with Sarah Gorham,
Nicole Roseland, Hannah Cady and Megan Morris set to be honored in a ceremony
following the match as part of Senior Night festivities.
As the program has done in recent seasons, the Senior Night ceremony will take place
following the match and will feature the four seniors with their families and
friends. Over the last four years, WKU has claimed 31 victories and earned its best
finish in conference play since joining C-USA, placing third in the standings in
2016 with a 12-6-1 record.
Gorham, Roseland, Cady and Morris have combined for 19 goals and 18 assists during
their careers on The Hill and will look to add to those tallies in their final home
match on Friday evening. WKU will also be seeking to close out an unbeaten season at
the WKU Soccer Complex for just the second time in program history after previously
accomplishing that feat in 2008.
The Lady Toppers (4-8-4, 2-5-2 C-USA) had their four-match unbeaten streak snapped
in their last time out, dropping a 2-1 decision in overtime at UAB last Friday
night. Gorham found the back of the net in the 20th minute off assists from Ambere
Barnett and Victoria Mayo to equalize, but the Blazers tallied the golden goal just
over four minutes into the first overtime period to pick up the win.
Gorham’s goal at UAB was her sixth of the season, the most among Lady Toppers in
2018 and her most in a single season in her career. With one more match to play, the
redshirt senior has put together a strong career on The Hill, totaling 10 goals and
seven assists across her four seasons of action, and has fired four match-winning
goals, including three this season against Evansville, FIU and UTEP.
Barnett leads WKU with 18 points (five goals, eight assists) this season and will
likely finish as WKU’s top point-scorer, marking the second time in the last three
seasons that a true freshman has led the Lady Toppers in the category after Chandler
Backes also accomplished the feat in 2016. Barnett’s eight assists are currently
tied for the third-most in a single season in WKU Soccer history.
On defense, no starting member of WKU’s back line has played fewer than 1,232
minutes this season, with Kaylyn Bryant (1,495 of a possible 1,530) and Christina
Bragado (1,457) leading the way. Avery Jacobsen (1,385) and Megan Morris (1,232)
round out the quartet that has helped to hold WKU’s opponents to one goal or fewer
in eight different matches this season.
Bailee Witt has started all but the season-opening match at Murray State in goal,
making 55 saves with a goals against average of 1.67 across her 16 matches between
Marshall (5-8-3, 3-5-1 C-USA) enters Friday’s contest on a five-match winless
streak, with its most recent victory coming in a 1-0 win on Sept. 28 at Old
Dominion. In the Thundering Herd’s last time out, they earned a 2-2 draw against
Louisiana Tech, getting goals from Gabby Powers and Farah Abu-Tayeh to pick up a
point in the C-USA clash.
Marah and Farah Abu-Tayeh lead the Thundering Herd with eight and six goals,
respectively, and both sit atop the team’s leaderboard with 17 points apiece. Farah
Abu-Tayeh has dished out a team-best five assists, and Marah Abu-Tayeh has fired 36
shots to lead Marshall this season.
In goal, Megan Bonelli has played all but 136 minutes for Marshall and sports a 1.70
goals against average with 76 saves and a pair of solo shutouts.
Friday’s match will mark the end of the 2018 season for the Lady Toppers, who are
set to bring back 70 percent of their goalscoring and 75 percent of their assists on
offense from this season heading into 2019. With a win or draw on Friday evening,
the Lady Toppers will also carry an 11-match home unbeaten streak into next season,
the second-longest active streak among C-USA teams in that category.