Oct. 31, 2013
MIAMI – On a warm Halloween night in Miami, junior goalkeeper Lizzie Kish’s (Boyertown, Pa.) ninth shutout helped the Marshall women’s soccer team reach its first postseason since 2010 with a 1-0 victory at FIU, Thursday.
“The team played really well,” Marshall coach Kevin Long said. “FIU is dangerous. They have a unique way of playing that is challenging and they deserved the wins they got. With that said, we knew we had to find success tonight. We knew what was on the line, and we had to play with some urgency and panic.”
The Thundering Herd concluded the regular season at 9-6-3, 4-4-2 in Conference-USA play, finishing the first winning season since 2009 (12-7-0, 5-6-0 C-USA). On another note, Marshall allowed just 14 goals in the regular season, the fewest in program history.
East Division leader (entering Thursday) FIU fell to 7-11-0, 5-5-0 C-USA.
In the 21st minute, sophomore defender Lia Foster (Keswick, Ontario) struck for her first career goal on a free kick that sailed over FIU keeper Vanessa Plasencia’s head, putting the Herd up, 1-0.
“Lia had such a great goal,” Long said. “It was unpredictable, but we’re so happy with it.”
Marshall’s back line held strong throughout the entire first half – for the first time all season, the Herd defense allowed zero shots in the first 45 minutes of play. It also was the first time all year that the Panthers were held shot-less in the first half.
FIU didn’t take a shot until the 46th minute of play. The Panthers were limited to seven shots for the match and never found an equalizer.
The Herd dominated the shot chart by a margin of 17-7, and led in corner kicks, 8-5.
Kish’s ninth shutout of 2013 tied her with Liz Orton for most season shutouts in program history, and moved her into a tie for second place with Kayla Johnson for career shutouts (9), behind Orton (17). She finished the night with a blank slate and two saves.
Next, the Herd awaits its fate as seeding is finalized for the tournament. All-time, Marshall is 0-2 in the postseason, its last appearance being a 3-0 loss versus Houston in the 2010 first round. This will be the Herd’s second-ever appearance in the C-USA Tournament.
The C-USA Women’s Soccer Tournament is scheduled to begin Monday, Nov. 4, in Houston. The top five teams from the East and West Divisions compete for the championship. For more information, including standings and statistics, visit Conference USA’s website.
For the latest information about Marshall women’s soccer, follow @HerdWSoccer on Twitter.