Embracing the Road

By Chris Jennings ~ Assistant Copy Editor

Taylor Smith. Photo Courtesy of Lynchburg Athletics/Olivia Smith

The University of Lynchburg Women’s Soccer Team is gearing up for the vigorous conference schedule in the Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC)

The team has a rich tradition of being successful and is looking to capitalize on a pair of out-of-conference road victories against Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) and Arcadia University on back-to-back weekends.

The Hornets traveled to Rochester on Sept. 11, to knock off RIT in a double overtime victory with a last second goal scored by Meghan Lauder

A forced overtime occured when Madison Myers tied the game up with less than a minute remaining in the game. 

This past weekend the Hornets traveled to Glenside, Pennsylvania to face Arcadia and came away with a 4-0 victory. Goal scorers included the overtime hero, Megan Lauder, with a pair, as well as Taylor Smith and Alyssa Damato both notching a goal a piece.

“These past two weeks have allowed us to grow as a team and the wins have helped the confidence,” said Taylor Smith

Smith, who is a legacy for coach Todd Olsen, has been around the program for multiple years, and feels rejuvenated after their “COVID year”. 

“Yes, we struggled last year in an odd covid year but with the incoming freshmen we feel like we have a rejuvenated spirit and are ready to attack the season,” said Smith.  

Smith understands what it is like to come into a decorated program and play meaningful minutes immediately.

Smith added,“I have been in their position and I know that the first time you run onto the field against some of the best teams in the country it can be nerve racking. But I hope that I have been able to make the transition easier for them by sharing my experiences.” 

The Hornets look to continue their success with finishing up a five game road stand that ends this weekend. 

The Hornets will play Roanoke College Wednesday night (Sept. 22) in a non-conference matchup followed by the ODAC opener at Guilford Friday night (Sept. 24) prior to finishing the week against Emory on Sunday afternoon in Charlotte.

Senior Annie Doyle said, “I think that Coach Olsen has given us a great schedule that is gonna prepare us for the rest of the year and especially for ODAC play.”

The senior class has not been back to the ODAC title game since 2018 and have high hopes this year that they will be able to climb back to the top of the conference.

Doyle said, “I personally have yet to ring the bell but I know the other girls in our class have and I think everyone on this team really wants that feeling for the first time.”

Smith said, “I think it would be a great way to cap off our time together at Lynchburg and set us up for a NCAA tournament run”.

Lynchburg soccer has been dominant in soccer including 16 conference titles on the women’s side, but the Hornets have been absent from the title game since 2018 which was the last time the women rang the bell.

Be sure to read more about University of Lynchburg Women’s Soccer at https://www.lynchburgsports.com/sports/wsoc/index 

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