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Kentucky Soccer Roundup: Thrills, Draws, and Dominance in the Commonwealth’s Collegiate Clash

Hello, and welcome to the Bluegrass Soccer Cast NCAA Division 1 Men’s and Women’s Soccer Recap for the week of October 2nd – October 8th. This is a weekly recap that will recap all Division 1 soccer programs, in the beautiful Commonwealth of Kentucky, matches from the previous week with some small bits of analysis in there. 

For coverage on the college programs that are NCAA D2/D3, NAIA, or NCCAA, please check out our weekly score report. Note: The BGSC College Cup is a competition for all levels to see who is the best (men or women) college soccer program in the state.

Now, let’s check in on how Kentucky’s big dogs did this past week –

Please note that we would love to give in-depth analysis of all matches but we are just 3 freelancers doing our best to give coverage to all things soccer in our beloved Commonwealth. Records are presented in (Win-Loss-Draw) format.


Bellarmine

Men (2-2-6, 5th in the ASUN at 1-1-2)

Bellarmine 1 FGCU 1

Bellarmine Earns Hard-Fought Road Point at FGCU

The Bellarmine men’s soccer team secured a gritty result on Saturday night, rallying for a 1-1 draw at FGCU in ASUN action. The Knights struck early in the second half when junior Brendan Schoemehl headed in a goal off a Rahim Shalash corner. But FGCU found an equalizer late from Jaffer Murphy in the 82nd minute.

A major factor was goalkeeper Matthew Brozovich, who came up with a huge penalty kick save midway through the second half to keep Bellarmine ahead after surrendering the early goal.

The Knights had to absorb heavy pressure late as FGCU pushed for a winner. But the defense held firm to secure the stalemate. Bellarmine was outshot 12-3 overall, with the hosts controlling the second half. But their resilient team defending preserved the draw.

With an unbeaten record through two ASUN road contests, Bellarmine returns home Tuesday to face Wright State next. This gutsy result should provide a boost as the Knights seek continued success in conference play.

Women (4-6-5, 10th in the ASUN at 1-4-3)

Bellarmine 0 Central Arkansas 2

Bellarmine 1 North Alabama 2

After a four-game unbeaten streak, the Bellarmine women’s soccer team stumbled in their recent road trip, dropping consecutive matches at Central Arkansas and North Alabama.

Against Central Arkansas, the Knights fell behind early after a UCA steal led to a goal in the 9th minute. The Bears struck again late in the first half for a 2-0 lead that held up, snapping Bellarmine’s streak.

At North Alabama, Emma Nicholson provided a bright spot by equalizing in the 53rd minute. After UNA scored early in the second half, Nicholson ripped a left-footed rocket off the crossbar to make it 1-1. 

But heartbreak followed in the 89th minute as North Alabama tallied the late winner, denying Bellarmine a hard-earned point.

While certainly disappointing results, the Knights can build off Nicholson’s emergence as an offensive catalyst. Her third goal showed individual brilliance.

Sitting just 1-4-3 in conference play, Bellarmine will be desperate for points during their final three regular season home games. 

They’ll look to bounce back Thursday against FGCU and regain momentum before the ASUN Tournament. With star power like Nicholson, hope remains.

Eastern Kentucky (4-7-4, 3-2-3 in the ASUN – 4th in conference)

EKU 0 at North Alabama 0

The Colonels extended their unbeaten run to 6 matches as they secured their 3rd straight shoutout in their 0-0 draw on Thursday against the Lions of North Alabama.

As the scoreboard suggests, the match was a largely defensive affair, with 8 shots on target combined by both sides (5 for EKU and 3 for UNA). However, the EKU attack was again dangerous, forcing the Lions defense to make plays and stop them. Krick made 3 saves in the match, as she secured another shutout on the year.

The Colonels are rolling after a rough non-conference schedule as they climb up the ASUN standings.

EKU 1 at Central Arkansas 2

EKU’s unbeaten streak was snapped on Sunday after a rough 1st half and a comeback that fell just short against Central Arkansas. The match was EKU’s 2nd conference loss of the year.

The Sugar Bears got their pair of goals within 10 minutes of each other, netting the 1st in the 36th minute, and the 2nd off a PK right at the end of the half in the 45th minute. The Colonels were able to get one back in the 79th minute when Anderson set up Herranz for her 2nd goal of the year. Krick did pick up 3 more saves in this match.

The Colonels will return home to host both matchups this week. On Thursday, October 12th they will host Stetson at 4 pm EST/2 pm CST before hosting Florida Gulf Coast on Sunday, October 15th at 12 pm EST/1 pm CST.

Kentucky

Men (3-6-2, 0-3-1 in the Sun Belt)

UK 1 vs. Indiana 1

The Cats finally ended their scoreless streak on Tuesday night in their 1-1 draw to fellow struggling preseason highly ranked foe Indiana. The results also marked the first time UK has scored a goal since their 3-2 win over Lipscomb back on September 8th.

The Cats would go down early when the Hoosiers found the back of the net in the 12th minute, but junior defender Eoin Martin would score the Wildcats first goal in 403 minutes of action off an assist from Brennan Creek to level the match 1 all in the 29th minute. The Cats defense would then shut down the Hoosiers while the attack desperately tried to get a game winner to no avail.

The once championship hopeful Cats might be on the upswing after a very rough stretch.

UK 1 at Coastal Carolina 1

The Cats have scored a goal in back to back games, and even gained the lead for the first time in 475 minutes in their 1-1 draw in Conway, South Carolina on Saturday night.

Freshman forward Isaiah Chisolm would give the Cats the lead early when he found the back of the net in the 12th minute off an assist from Max Miller. Sadly, Coastal Carolina would level the match in the 31st minute. UK’s attack would try their best to find the game winner, forcing the Chanticleers keeper to make 5 saves in the 2nd half but the Cats winless streak would be extended to 6 matches.

The Wildcats will look to end their winless run on Friday, October 13th when they host JMU at 7 pm EST/6 pm CST.

Women (8-0-5, 2-0-4 in the SEC)

#18 UK 1 at Tennessee 1

The Cats finally cracked the top 25 this week, appearing at 18 in the polls. The Cats are flourishing this year, and it is nice to see them finally get some respect, and they had a thriller against the rival Vols in their 1-1 draw.

The first half would be a largely defensive affair with neither team really having any attacking threat with only 1 save made. However, the Cats would open the scoring in the 60th minute when Úlfarsdóttir netted her 3rd goal on the year with help from Rhodes and Young. Sadly, the Vols would strike back quickly, leveling the match in the 69th minute after going down a man just a minute prior.

The Cats finally got their national respect as they continue to eye an SEC title.

#18 UK 2 vs Vanderbilt 0

The Cats finally got back to their dominant winning ways, getting their 2nd shutout in SEC play when they rolled over the Commodores on Sunday in their 2-0 win.

Úlfarsdóttir would net her 2nd goal of the week and her 4th of the year when she converted a PK in the 36th minute before Lacognato would secure the insurance goal with help from Rhodes and Hoytink in the 49th minute. The Cats defense shined in this one, holding Vanderbilt to just 2 shots on goal as Josephson picked up another shutout.

The Cats will host the Bulldogs of Mississippi State on Sunday, October 15th at 3 pm EST/2 pm CST.

Louisville

Men (7-3-2, 4th in the ACC Atlantic Division at 1-3-1)

#21 UofL 3 UMKC 2

Cardinals Strike Late to Defeat Kansas City 3-2

The 8th-ranked Louisville men’s soccer team pulled off a thrilling comeback on Monday night, defeating Kansas City 3-2 at home. The Cardinals scored three second-half goals, including the game-winner in the 89th minute, to earn the victory.

It was a tale of two halves for Louisville. Kansas City controlled the opening 45 minutes and took a 1-0 lead into the break. But the Cardinals came alive after halftime, equalizing just seven minutes in on an own goal off a long throw-in by Quinton Elliot. However, Kansas City responded to go back in front 2-1. Louisville pulled even again in the 70th minute when Damien Barker John finished off a feed from Elliot for his first goal of the night. 

The two teams traded chances over the final 20 minutes before Louisville capitalized in the waning moments. Brandon McManus set up Barker John for the dramatic last-second winner, his second tally of the evening. Barker John continued his red-hot form with goals in three straight matches. Meanwhile, Louisville showed resolve by battling back twice in the second half. The Cardinals dominated after halftime, outshooting Kansas City 17-3. Head coach John Michael Hayden has to be thrilled with his team’s perseverance to remain unbeaten at home.

At 7-2-1 overall, Louisville will look to carry this momentum into conference play. Next up is a Friday night road clash against Clemson. If the Cardinals can replicate this type of gritty second-half performance, they should be able to hang with anyone in the ACC.

#21 UofL 3 UMKC 2

No. 21 Louisville Suffers Massively Disappointing 4-0 Loss at Clemson

The 21st-ranked Louisville men’s soccer team hit rock bottom on Friday night, falling 4-0 on the road at Clemson in a massively disappointing performance. The Cardinals were blanked and outplayed in every aspect of the match. Louisville was thoroughly dominated for the full 90 minutes. While the game remained scoreless in the first half, Clemson controlled possession and outshot the Cardinals 14-4 before the break. 

It only got worse from there as Clemson finally capitalized in the second half. The floodgates opened after the Tigers scored in the 53rd minute en route to the lopsided result. When the final whistle blew, Louisville had been outshot 31-5 while failing to earn a single corner kick. It was as one-sided a match as you will see all season long in the ACC. The loss was the worst of the John Michael Hayden era at Louisville. His squad looked unprepared and failed to match Clemson’s intensity all night. It was an utterly forgettable performance.

The Cardinals now find themselves heading in the wrong direction with a 1-3-1 record in their last five matches. The freefall down the rankings is sure to continue after this embarrassment. Louisville must go back to the drawing board in a hurry with the meat of their ACC schedule still upcoming. If changes aren’t made, more results like this are likely on the horizon.

Simply put, this was a massive failure and wake-up call for Louisville. The Cardinals have plenty of problems to sort out before taking the field again versus Ohio State on Tuesday night.

Women (3-7-4, 8th in the ACC at 2-3-1)

UofL 0 #2 Florida State 2

No. 2 Florida State Blanks Cardinals at Home

The Louisville women’s soccer team faced one of their toughest tests of the season on Thursday night, falling 2-0 at home to the 2nd-ranked Florida State Seminoles. The talented Seminoles eventually wore down the Cardinals to remain unbeaten.

On a rainy night at Lynn Stadium, neither team could break through in a scoreless first half. Louisville’s Karsyn Cherry made a key clearance off the goal line early to keep the game 0-0. 

Early in the second half, the Cardinals nearly took the lead when Fiona Gaißer forced a turnover and fired a shot, but FSU keeper Cristina Roque made a big save.

Florida State finally broke through in the 67th minute on a goal from Taylor Huff. In the 77th minute, Maria Alagoa added an insurance tally to put the Seminoles up 2-0, which would be the final score.

“We knew it would take a special effort tonight and though we hung tough, we couldn’t find that moment of magic,” said Louisville head coach Karen Ferguson-Dayes.

While the result wasn’t what Louisville hoped for, they showed resilience against one of the ACC’s premier sides. The Cardinals will try to get back on track Sunday against Syracuse on Senior Day.  

If Louisville can build on their defensive focus from tonight and find more consistency on offense, they could still make noise in the wide-open ACC.

UofL 2 Syracuse 1

Cards Grab Senior Day Victory Over Syracuse

The Louisville women’s soccer team celebrated Senior Day with a hard-fought 2-1 victory over Syracuse on Sunday afternoon. The win snapped a two-match losing skid for the Cardinals.

After a scoreless first half, Louisville freshman Betsy Huckaby broke through with her first career goal in the 56th minute. Huckaby curled a beautiful shot inside the far post to put the Cards up 1-0. 

Just two minutes later, sophomore Emerson Jennings doubled Louisville’s advantage with a volley goal off a corner kick. Jennings now has two goals on the season.

Syracuse cut into the lead with a goal in 74th minute but could not find an equalizer down the stretch.

“It was a great team effort and the perfect way to honor our seniors,” said Louisville head coach Karen Ferguson-Dayes.

The Cardinals controlled possession and outshot Syracuse 15-10 in the win. The victory moved Louisville to 2-3-1 in ACC play as they try to move up the crowded conference standings.

Louisville will hit the road next weekend to face Boston College. If the Cards can build on the energy from Senior Day and sustain that momentum, they could make a postseason push during this final month of the regular season.

Morehead State (4-5-5, 3-1-2 in the OVC)

Morehead St. 1 vs Southeast Missouri 0

The Eagles have moved themselves up to 2nd in the OVC with their big shutout win over Southeast Missouri on Sunday afternoon. The 1-0 win is their 3rd conference win on the year, putting them 1 behind the OVC leaders of Tennessee Tech.

Nicole Fiantaco, a 5th year forward from Sterling Heights, Michigan would get the Eagles lone goal early in the 8th minute with help from Larbes and Fite. The Eagles defense then suffocated the Redhawks attack, holding them to just 3 shots on target and 3 corner kicks.

The Eagles will host OVC foe Lindenwood on Sunday for Senior Day. The match is scheduled to kickoff at 1 pm EST/12 pm CST.

Murray State (4-7-4, 4th in the MVC at 2-1-4)

Murray State 4 Northern Iowa 1

Racers Roll to Crucial Conference Victory Over UNI

The Murray State women’s soccer team earned their most impressive result of the season on Thursday, dominating Northern Iowa in a 4-1 home victory. The Racers controlled the match from the opening whistle, taking the lead in the 8th minute on a header from Mary Hardy. Hailey Cole then exploded for two goals in a 15-minute span to make it 3-0 Murray State before halftime. Megan Wilson added the exclamation point with her first career goal in the 51st minute to extend the lead to 4-0. UNI got one back late on a wonder strike, but it was a thorough performance by the Racers. Murray State outshot the Panthers 20-9, showing the offensive improvement Coach Matt Lodge has been hoping to see. Getting goals from four different players also highlights the Racers’ depth.

The emphatic result provides a massive three points for Murray State as they try to climb the Missouri Valley Conference table. After some close calls lately, the Racers left no doubt in this one. With the offense clicking and goalkeeper Griselda Revolorio securing her first collegiate win, the Racers seized momentum heading into a big showdown at Illinois State on Sunday.

Murray State 2 Illinois State 1

Racers Keep Rolling With Win at Illinois State

The Murray State women’s soccer team made it two conference victories in a row on Sunday, shutting out Illinois State 2-0 on the road. Hailey Cole continued her stellar play as of late, netting her third game-winning goal of the season in the 31st minute to put the Racers ahead. Mary Hardy then provided an insurance tally in the 83rd minute, scoring off a feed from Sami Wilson for her fifth goal of the year. Goalkeeper Griselda Revolorio was barely troubled, only facing nine shots and securing her fourth clean sheet. This impressive result provides another massive three points for Murray State in the Missouri Valley Conference standings. 

After some early struggles, the Racers are hitting their stride at the perfect time. Back-to-back wins show Murray State can compete with any conference foe. With the offense clicking and defense locking down opponents, Murray State looks like a team no one will want to face come tournament time. Coach Matt Lodge’s group will aim to keep the momentum going during a two-match homestand starting Sunday against Southern Illinois.

Northern Kentucky

Men (2-8-3, 1-4-0 in the Horizon)

NKU 0 vs #4 Akron 2

The Norse would put up a strong effort against the Zips, who are the #4 team in the nation but would ultimately fall 2-0 on the road.

The Norse would hold the Zips scoreless until the 55th minute, and then the Zips would get their 2nd quickly thereafter in the 63rd minute. Norse keeper Nic Lemen would make 8 saves in the Norse effort to keep up with a top team.

The Norse do need to find some scoring, because their defense has done its best but it is not enough.

NKU 1 vs Green Bay 2

The Alumni Day festivities did not go to plan for the Norse, after giving up an early lead and falling 2-1 to Green Bay.

Sophomore defender Wade Stinson would give the Norse an early 1-0 lead in the 6th minute with help from Behnfeldt and Burlew. However, that lead would be short lived with Green Bay equalizing in the 14th and taking the lead in the 19th minutes. NKU was lucky to get that goal, as they recorded only 1 other shot on target the whole match.

NKU will play their final non-conference match against Dayton on the road before hosting IUPUI on Saturday, October 14th at 7 pm EST/6 pm CST.

Women (5-3-6, 2-2-3 in the Horizon)

NKU 4 at Green Bay 1

The NKU bounced back from that loss to Milwaukee in dominant fashion, scoring early and not letting up in their 4-1 win over Green Bay on Thursday.

Junior defender Maria Wiefering would start the scoring with her 1st goal of the year in the 3rd minute with help from Yordy. Sofia Wilmes would net her 3rd goal on the year with help from Carl and Newman in the 14th minute, and Cornett would net her 3rd goal of the year to cap off the dominant first half in the 37th minute. Cornett would get a brace in the match, capping off the Norse scoring in the 65th minute with help from Yordy and Carl. Green Bay would get their lone goal in the 73rd minute, but the Norse fully controlled this one.

NKU 1 vs Cleveland St. 0

The Norse rolled after their first Horizon league win of the season right into their 2nd with their nail biting 1-0 win over Cleveland State on Sunday afternoon.

NKU would dominate this affair, however the Vikings goalkeeper made it a nail biter by stopping 6 shots to keep her team in this game the entire time. Anderson would net her 4th goal of the year with help from Yordy, who has 4 assists on the year, in the 47th minute for the match’s lone goal.

The Norse will travel down to Robert Morris on Sunday with kickoff set for 1 pm EST/12 pm CST in a match that could move the Norse up to 3rd in the Horizon league standings nearing the end of the year.

Western Kentucky (3-3-7, 6th in the CUSA at 1-1-2)

WKU 0 UTEP 1

UTEP Hands Lady Toppers First Conference Loss

The WKU women’s soccer team suffered their first Conference USA loss of the season on Saturday night, falling 1-0 at UTEP. The Miners scored the lone goal of the match in the 33rd minute to hand WKU their third loss overall, dropping them to 3-3-7 and 1-1-2 in C-USA action.

The Lady Toppers had some chances but could not find an equalizer, being outshot 7-9 by UTEP. Kayla Meyer and Aspen Seaich led WKU with 3 shots each in the losing effort. The tight defeat snapped WKU’s four-match unbeaten streak after they had started to round into form. But the Lady Toppers could not sustain their momentum on the road. 

WKU will look to regroup and get back on track when they return home to host Louisiana Tech on Thursday night. Despite the setback, the Lady Toppers are still in a good position in the conference standings. Saturday’s loss reinforces that WKU must bring their best effort in each match in the parity-filled C-USA. They will aim to bounce back and defend their home turf next time out.


That wraps up this week of the Bluegrass D1 Recap, tune in all season long for updates on your favorite college teams throughout the beautiful commonwealth, and make sure to stick to Bluegrass Soccer Cast (@BGSoccerCast on all social media platforms) for full coverage of everything soccer in our beautiful Commonwealth. 

Authors

  • Jimmie Martin

    Jimmie Martin is a charismatic soccer podcast host from Kentucky who passionately advocates for Promotion and Relegation in US Soccer. With infectious enthusiasm and a lighthearted sense of humor, he engages fellow enthusiasts on the Bluegrass Soccer Cast. Jimmie's goal is to promote the growth of soccer in the US while entertaining and educating his audience.

  • Jon Hunt

    Jon Hunt is an avid and enthusiastic soccer podcast host. Originally from the Detroit area, he now resides in central Kentucky. Jon brings passion and his love of soccer history to the Bluegrass Soccer Cast community. His ultimate goal is to continue the growth of soccer in America with a focus of the thriving soccer scene in Kentucky. #ProRelForUSA

Kentucky Soccer Roundup: Thrills, Draws, and Dominance in the Commonwealth’s Collegiate Clash

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