WKU Soccer shuts out Louisville, 1-0

Published: Mar. 27, 2021 at 9:44 PM CDT
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BOWLING GREEN, Ky. (WBKO) -Western Kentucky Soccer kept its unbeaten streak alive with a 1-0 shutout win against Louisville on Saturday afternoon at the WKU Soccer Complex. The Lady Toppers improve to 6-1-1 on the season with the win and haven’t been beaten since Feb. 6.

“One of the goals we had coming into the match was we wanted to score in the first 15 minutes,” said head coach Jason Neidell. “We wanted to get out on our front foot and put Louisville on their heels a little bit. We scored that goal and then we got after them and really kind of took it to them in the first half.”

The Lady Toppers didn’t take long to accomplish that goal, scoring the lone goal of the game in the second minute. WKU attacked the Louisville defense early and was rewarded with a corner kick. Brina Micheels launched the ball into the box where it bounced around a few times before Sydney Ernst passed it out to Annah Hopkins. Hopkins rocketed a shot towards the goal and the Louisville goalkeeper appeared to make the save, but the ball bounced past her into the net.

“It was an amazing feeling (scoring the lone goal in the game), but it was a team effort,” said Hopkins. “I was so proud of the team and how we played today. We definitely came out strong and finished strong.”

WKU held Louisville to only one shot in the first half while recording seven of their own.

It was Hopkins’ third goal of the season, the second-most on the team. Ernst earned her third assist of the season, tied for the lead for WKU.

It was Ashley Kobylinski’s third clean sheet of the season. She made four saves in the shutout and has a 0.83 goals-against average on the season.

The Lady Toppers’ 6-1-1 record is their best through eight matches since the 2008 season. It was also the first time since the 2008 season WKU has beaten a Power Five team, last doing it with a 2-1 double-overtime win against Ole Miss on Aug. 22, 2008. It was WKU’s first victory against Louisville, improving to 1-2 against the Cardinals.

WKU will resume conference play, traveling to Old Dominion on Friday, April 2. First touch is set for 6 p.m. (CT) in Norfolk. The Lady Toppers will be defending their first-place standing in the Conference USA East division with 10 total points in the conference standings. The Monarchs are one point behind them with nine, tied with Charlotte for second place.

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