The Southeast Missouri State women's soccer team (6-5, 2-1 OVC) will play the Eastern Kentucky University Colonels on Friday, Oct. 8 and the Morehead State University Eagles on Sunday, Oct. 10.
Eastern Kentucky and Morehead State are currently tied for first place in the OVC standings with three wins and zero losses apiece. Both games will be played at Houck Stadium at 7 p.m. and 2 p.m., respectively.
"We have a tough weekend coming up," said the Redhawk's junior defender Shona Goodwin of the upcoming games against EKU and MSU.
"They are two of the very best teams in the conference," said Redhawk's head coach Heather Nelson.
The Colonels (6-4-2 overall) and the Eagles (6-6 overall) have defeated three common opponents in OVC play. EKU defeated Murray State, UT Martin and Tennessee Tech by the scores of 1-0, 2-1 and 1-0, respectively. While MSU defeated the same teams 2-1, 4-0 and 2-0, respectively.
Statistically, Southeast has had success against both teams in the past, with a 3-1 all-time record against EKU and a 9-1-3 all-time record against MSU.
"They are good, strong, disciplined teams," said Goodwin. "They actually play soccer; they don't just kick the ball around."
The Redhawks will look to continue their push towards making the OVC tournament, which Goodwin said the team should make as long as they keep improving.
"I think based on history, we need three [more] wins to make the tournament," said Nelson. The Redhawks lost their conference opener against Jacksonville State on Sept. 24 with the score of 2-1. A game in which Nelson said the team "made some critical mistakes."
"We made some mistakes in the OVC game, but since then we have corrected those things," she said.
The Redhawks defeated Austin Peay two days after the Jacksonville State loss by the score of 1-0.
They then earned their second consecutive conference victory over
Eastern Illinois, 1-0 at home on Oct. 3.
Senior forward Ashley Runion scored the lone goal in the 77th minute to defeat Austin Peay, while Courtney Luehmann scored the only goal in the victory over Eastern Illinois in the 14th minute.
Freshman goalie Ashton Aubuchon improved her record to 6-4 and recorded her third and fourth shutouts. Both Goodwin and Nelson feel like the team has been playing in concert recently.
"I think we have a strong, dedicated team that has became close," said Goodwin.
"The team has really came together quickly off the field, and I think that contributes to what we see on the field," said Nelson.