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'We Are Going to Nationals'

By Ashley Alonzo
On November 10, 2016

Photo by: Ashley Alonzo

On Nov. 1, the Ottawa University women’s soccer team battled to get a 6-2 win over Friends University. This victory gave the Lady Braves an opportunity to win conference and an automatic bid to nationals.

During the whole season, the women’s soccer team worked hard with one goal in mind: going to nationals. The head coach, Mark Gordon, feels proud, satisfied and amazed with the work his team has done and the way each of the players has been supportive of one another.

As the Lady Braves entered the conference tournament on Nov. 4, Gordon believed that in order for the team to take first place, the players must continue to improve. Regardless of how technical the team is, there is always time and space for progress.

With a mix of returners and new players in the team, the chemistry between them has been surprisingly amazing. The players consider this to be relieving because this kind of support network is hard to build, having only spent a few months together. They were lucky to being able create this sense of teamwork from the very beginning.

Johana Moran, junior, a transfer from Fullerton College in Fullerton, CA, and captain of the women’s soccer team, feels very accomplished, citing the dedication every player has put in that led them to win conference.

“Being part of the soccer team has been a rewarding feeling because the hard work and perseverance we all have had as a team has been worth it,” Moran said.  She added that the main aspect she looks forward to the rest of their journey to nationals is to see how much further the team could go. Because as a family and a team, the Lady Braves have the talent to compete at a higher level.

MacKenna Stang, a fifth-year athlete who went through a variety of surgeries, feels satisfied and glad on her decision of playing with the team for an extra year. The relationship they have built is something she will always remember.

“My favorite memory is just being able to play. It was hard having to sit out for three years straight. So overall, I’m simply just grateful to be healthy and playing with a wonderful group of woman” Stang said.

Winning the 2016 regular season is not the only accomplishment this team of talented women is striving for. They aim to be the number-one seed of the bracket to get to host their playoff game here at OU.

On Nov. 4, the Lady Braves bested Sterling University by putting five goals behind their net for quarter-finals. On Nov. 8, the team returned home to host the semi-finals against Oklahoma Wesleyan University, receiving a 3-2 win.  

The Lady Braves will now play Kansas Wesleyan University on Nov. 11 to battle the tournament championship. Be there!

-- Ashley Alonzo is a junior forward on the Lady Braves soccer team.

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