The Oregon State Women’s Soccer team looks forward as they begin the best season in program history. After a struggling season last year with only two wins, new head coach Matt Kagan has clearly implemented improvements to turn the program back onto the right track.
The team finished the 2018 season with a record of 2-17 and has begun the 2019 season at 7-0, including a few tight wins. With a strong start, the team must perform against ranked opponents in order to gain a resume and move up in the rankings.
Key players include freshman forward Brianna McReynolds and sophomore goalkeeper Bridgette Skiba. McReynolds scored the winning goal in overtime versus Rice in the 99th minute to win the game for the Beavers at 2-1. Skiba has totaled 15 saves for the season, including three in the overtime win versus Rice.
Previously, the program’s best start was in 2010 at 5-0. The team’s 5-0 win over Houston secured the best starting record in program history at 6-0-0.
“I’m proud of our team’s character,” said Kagan. The team and program has been praised for their success and grit thus far in the season.
The continued success of OSU Women’s Soccer will be consistency. Previously, the team’s two wins were versus Dartmouth and California in 2018. Fourteen of their losses were shut outs and the team scored a total of six goals for the entire season.
In contrast, the Beavers have scored a total of 19 goals in just seven games in 2019, more than three times the number of goals scored in the entire 2018 season. Additionally, five of the wins have been as shut outs while the other two were won in overtime. They have allowed a total of two goals in their first seven games.
For the Women’s Soccer team to be successful, the team will have to continue to be consistent in putting points on the board and on playing gritty in tough situations. Both wins in games where the other team scored at any point only ended in overtime.
Additionally, the team must attain a few significant wins to be considered a top 25 program. While the Beavers may have seven wins, gaining a few wins over stronger opponents such as Stanford, UCLA and Washington State.
The OSU Women’s Soccer team has successfully deemed this season a major improvement from the last. With a continued focus on strong scoring, they have the opportunity to move from the bottom of the PAC12 last year to a top 25 program in the coming season.