Lady Flames soccer team improves season with winning streak
After the 1-3-1 start to the season, the Lady Flames won seven of their eight scheduled games, winning the past four straight and improving their record to 8-4-1.
The Lady Flames have allowed only two opposing goals in the previous games'both goals allowed in the same game against the University of West Florida.
Senior goalkeeper Marbel Egwuenu, who has piled up 38 saves on the season, has helped anchored the Lady Flames defense. In her 908 minutes played this season, Egwuenu has only allowed seven goals and has five shutouts.
The Lady Flames' offense is led by freshman Nicole Blanchard, who has a team leading six goals on the season. Sophomore Kinsey Cichowitz has five goals and a team leading three assists.
Although the Lady Flames are a young team with seven starting underclassmen, Head Coach Matt Yelton feels that the upperclassmen have kept them accountable.
'Our upperclassmen are doing an excellent job of pushing the younger players and holding them accountable to the standards of our program,' Yelton said. 'It's been great to watch this team mature over the course of the year.'
Yelton feels that the Lady Flames have been doing good things, and likes how his team battles each game.
'Overall we are doing some good things. We just need to continue to battle in each match and bring out our best for 90 minutes and see how the season turns out,' Yelton said. 'Hopefully we can just dig in and with a great deal of effort have the results at the end of the year swing our way.'
Senior captain Alison Braun said she has seen many differences from the start of the season up to now.
'I think we've just settled into the season a little bit more, and we've found really great team chemistry,' Braun said. 'We've had really good effort in practice lately, and when we have good practice it usually affects our games positively. We've also had some girls really step up in games who are willing to work as hard as they can to get a win.'
The Lady Flames are thirteen games into the season with an 8-4-1 record, and number two ranking in the Gulf South Conference. The playoffs are just around the corner with only five games of regular season soccer left.
'We definitely want to win our conference and the NCCAA National Tournament, but for now we have to take it all one game at a time,' Braun said.
The Lady Flames are excited about what is still to come and hope to keep improving.
'I still think our best soccer is in front of us and that this team will continue to improve over the next several week,' Yelton said.