Women’s soccer to open RSC play on winning streak


Photo by Robert Berger

Senior defender Asia Pennock-Franke looks to make a pass in a home match against Lourdes earlier this year. The Pioneers defeated Shawnee state on the road last weekend and resume conference play Thursday at Brescia University.

Written By Rachael McKriger, Copy Editor

Having only one match last week couldn’t come at a better time for the Point Park women’s soccer team.

One match meant having more practice time.

The Pioneers used the opportunity to their advantage, with head coach Maggie Kuhn implementing a new midfield formation. Junior captain Gabby Widman called it a diamond formation, similar to the one the U.S. Men’s National Team used during the 2014 FIFA World Cup.

Despite only having two training sessions with the new formation, the Pioneers used it against Shawnee State University on Saturday. The move paid off, with Point Park grabbing a 2-0 victory in Portsmouth, Ohio.

Freshmen forward Tia Horew scored in the closing seconds of the first half. Meanwhile, senior midfielder Tatum Fabian continued the trend, scoring the final goal with one second left in the second half.

Widman explained that the team chemistry is coming together well.

“We’re getting more comfortable on the field,” Widman said. “Our intensity going into training is more aggressive. Players are now getting comfortable with their set spots and separating themselves. We want to field our best 11 to get the win.”

Senior defenseman Abby Magliocca said that the two late goals in each respective half were due to the team settling down against Shawnee.

“I thought we played really well,” Magliocca said. “We didn’t know what to expect from Shawnee. We started off seeing what the other team was capable of and seeing what their weaknesses were. In the first half, we had a lot of opportunities and couldn’t seem to get them in.”

Point Park took a total of 20 shots with 13 registering on goal, keeping Shawnee goalkeeper Michaela Garner busy. Meanwhile, on the other end, Ashtyn Webb made four saves.

Kuhn called the victory another great team effort.

“We have a great week of practice going into that game,” Kuhn said. “We focused on changing out midfield orientation. Everything we worked on the girls were able to apply to the game.”

Kuhn said the reason for the midfield formation change was due to personnel and viewing a film from previous matches this pre-season.

“I think that once we become more confident and comfortable in this formation and the more we play with it, the chemistry will build,” Kuhn said. “I’m still kind of missing a few players that can really help us, who have been hurt and are injured… However, the team we have right now is strong and I’m looking for them to build their chemistry with each other.”

The players that Kuhn is still missing and hoping to get back within the next couple of weeks include Horew and sophomore Courtney Clark. Horew’s participation in the match against Shawnee was her first action of the season.

The Pioneers begin River States Conference (RSC) play this Thursday against Brescia University, traveling down south to Owensboro, Kentucky. Point Park will have another road match against Cincinnati Christian University on Saturday before returning back to Highmark Stadium for five straight home matches.

Kuhn said that hopefully the Pioneers can give home fans a “better show than we did for the first part of the season.”

“Anytime we can go out and get a win, whether it’s on the road or at home, it’s important to our team confidence,” Kuhn said. “It’s always nice to play in front of our home crowd.”