Ohio womens soccer goal celebration

Ohio Soccer Heads Into 2016 Hoping for Bounce Back Year

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August is finally here and summer is officially coming to an end. As students prepare for a new school year, some Bobcats are already back and have been working in preparation not only for the school year, but for their 2016 season. After finishing  2015 with a final record of 5-13, the ladies of Ohio soccer are back and ready to take care of business as they all have one thing on their minds: bringing home a Mid-American Conference Championship.

Coach Aaron Rodgers shares this goal and has taken action. During the offseason, Rodgers hired two new assistant coaches and  added several new student athletes to the roster. Out of Ohio’s 18 regular season matches, 10 are at home. Five of those home matches are against non-conference opponents, including one against rival Marshall University.

In April, Ohio brought in a new assistant coach, former collegiate athlete Debs Brereton. “She brings the exact combination of a character builder as well as knowledgeable soccer mind that we need to continue the growth towards a championship,” Rodgers said in a press release.

This past July, Rodgers added another assistant, former MAC player and Miami University alumna, Jess Kodiak. “She brings unbelievable experience as a championship soccer player from Miami, one of the most consistent programs in the MAC” Rodgers said. “She knows exactly what it takes to win in the MAC and be a successful student athlete.”

Both assistant coaches have nearly a lifetime of experience with the sport and Rodgers shows the utmost confidence in the new coaching staff that will be with him on the sidelines through the season.

On the field, Ohio only lost two seniors from last season. Five new seniors should step up and take part in leading the team and expect to see some incredible athletic ability coming from the younger players as well.

The Bobcats added seven new student athletes to the roster. One of these seven is Cincinnati native Bryce Hueber, a junior midfielder transferring from Wright State. Combining the statistics of both her freshman and sophomore year seasons, Hueber has played in a total of 36 games, with 19 starts, 9 goals, 81 shots with 44 on goal, and four game winning goals.

Besides Hueber, Ohio’s returning athletes are expected to to be key contributors in achieving a MAC title. Returning sophomore goalie Taylor Smith played in 13 games and had a total of 75 saves in 2015. She also led the team with two shutouts.

Ohio will open the 2016 season with an exhibition game against Northern Kentucky at Chessa Field on Monday, Aug. 8 at 1 p.m.