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The Collegian

The Student News Site of Ashland University

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Ashland University

The Collegian

Eagle men’s soccer wraps up non-conference play, loses four

The Eagles look to kick off the season against the Walsh Cavaliers on Wednesday
Avery Rosso
Eagles Vander Rocha and Sam Jordan celebrate after scoring a goal in non-conference play.

It has been a less-than-ideal start for the reigning Great Midwest Athletic Conference (GMAC) men’s soccer champions.

The Eagles have started the 2023-24 season losing the first four games and now look to turn the page in time for conference play, which begins on Wednesday, Sept. 13.

The team’s losses in non-conference play came at the hands of Charleston, Millersville, Gannon and Mercyhurst. While they have struggled to start the season, the team as a whole has not lost any of its aggression or confidence.

“We have a better mindset and attitude going into every game,” said junior goalkeeper Ty Bowden. “Along with having a good mindset, we’ll start picking up some wins.”

In their home opener against Charleston, the Eagles were down by 3-0 at the half but got onto the scoreboard to make it 3-1 when the final whistle came around. The team was disappointed with how the home opener finished, but shifted gears and looked to bounce back in the next game against Millersville.

However, once again, the Eagles would take home a 3-2 loss in the dying embers of the outing. The other two non-conference scorelines of the season saw similar results as they had a 3-1 loss against Gannon and the most recent being, a 1-0 loss to Mercyhurst.

Even with the losses, a bright spot for the Eagles has emerged over this four-game span. That bright spot has been fifth-year player, Oliver Whaley who’s played very well, setting up good opportunities for the Eagles to score, along with having half of the team’s goals up until this point.

“We’ve played some very strong teams, the performance overall haven’t been where we would like, but the effort from the boys has been there.” said Whaley. “However the results haven’t been what we wanted.”

Through four games he leads the team with two goals, 11 shots and four shots on goal. He also has one assist to go alongside his effectiveness offensively.

The Eagles will start conference play on Wednesday when they host Walsh University at home at 6:30 p.m. at Ferguson Field.

“The boys are hungry for another successful season and I’m sure if we are all on board going into these conference games, we can achieve the goals we set at the start of the season as we look to defend our title,” said Whaley.

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