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The BG News
BG24 Newscast
November 30, 2023

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Consistency is vital for Bowling Green


With the 2005 soccer season just around the corner, BGSU women’s soccer coach Andy Richards is busy preparing a talented combination of veterans and newcomers for competition this fall.

The team went through a fitness test Aug. 10 before beginning practice a day later.

As reigning 2004 Mid-American Conference champions, the veterans of the squad hope to mix with two incoming transfers and six freshmen to improve on consistency and continue a tradition of excellence. The Falcons were 10-12-2 last year, including a mark of 5-5-2 in the conference.

‘Obviously, we were delighted with the success we had last year, but we were a little disappointed with our level of consistency,’ Richards said. ‘Our goal is to be more consistent throughout the season and try to repeat what we did last year.’

Graduated senior Kristy Coppes accounted for a large percentage of the team’s offense last year and has left some big shoes for the returning players to fill. However, with the proven talent of returning squad members, Richards believes stepping up on offense should not be a problem.

The team’s wealth of experienced players will be a main source of strength for the Falcons. The senior class, led by captains Natalie Sampiller and Ashley Wentzel, has already established plenty of match experience and team chemistry. Seniors include goalkeeper Ali Shingler, midfielders Molly Bremen, Leah Eggleton, Julie Trundle, Samantha Meister, defender Megan Rapp and forward Britt Anderson.

‘From those nine seniors, we have an awful lot of experience,’ Richards said. ‘They have the ability to play together well. We’re looking to their talent and leadership.’

Lindsey Carter, a strong midfielder and established starter, will be the lone returning junior.

A hardworking sophomore class will bring additional experience to the squad. Defenders Danielle Cygan and Rachel Ross, forward Tiernay Tilford and midfielder Janie Babich return this year. Gina Rossi, a standout freshman last year, will be sidelined for the season with an ACL injury.

Joining the BGSU veterans will be junior goalkeeper Katie Kopf, a transfer from Long Beach Community College, and sophomore defender Karie Sahly, a transfer from Valparaiso.

A strong freshman class will also bring depth to the squad.

‘They’re all just finding their feet right now,’ Richards said. ‘We’re excited about the level of recruits we’ve brought in.’

Richards, who is in his sixth season at the helm, had been working on offensive attacks through the first few days of practice and will also focus on defense throughout the preseason.

‘On the field, we’re trying to be very structured and make sure we’re learning and keeping positive,’ he said. ‘Off the field, we encourage [the players] to spend time with each other. That’s never been a problem, their very welcoming to new faces.’

Richards hopes the Friday night bowling trip during the first week of practice helped the team mix fun with the hard work required to prepare for a tough season.

The squad will have nine non-conference contests it begins MAC play. The Falcons will open the season with an exhibition match against Tiffin at 4 p.m. Aug. 23 at home.

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