By Dylan Vazzano, TTU Sports Information
COOKEVILLE, Tenn. – The Tennessee Tech soccer team is set to leap back into its OVC campaign, as the Golden Eagles head to UT Martin for a Thursday night battle with the Skyhawks. First kick under the lights at Skyhawk Soccer Field is scheduled for 7 p.m. CT.
A look at Tennessee Tech
The Golden Eagles (1-5-1, 0-2-0 OVC) prepare to hit the pitch in their conference clash with UTM after the purple and gold saw its last slated contest again Belmont postponed due to inclement weather on Sunday. Tech's get-together with the Bruins is now on the books for Tuesday, Oct. 12.
Having played in just two OVC tilts, the Golden Eagles are in search of their first check mark in the league win column after falling 4-3 in overtime to SIUE on Sept. 26 in the opener, before suffering a 1-0 setback at Morehead State on Sept. 30. TTU's tango with the Eagles featured a Morehead goal in 81st minute.
Tech has split the pipes four times this season, using a Yao Giada Zhou score in a win over Liberty in the home opener on Aug. 22, as well as a Meredith Nye goal, a Bailey Taylor net-finder and an own goal in the loss to SIUE. Overall, Chloe Smith paces the club with 11 shots, while Giada Zhou is the only other Golden Eagle with double-digit attempts behind an even 10. Smith is the squad leader with six shots on-goal.
Defensively, TTU has yielded one goal or less in five-of-seven matches this season. Senior Isabelle Austin has been the only Golden Eagle to appear in between the pipes this year and has a 1.76 goals against average and a .768 save percentage thanks to 43 saves this year.
A look at UT Martin
The Skyhawks (7-3-1, 3-0-0 OVC) are one of three OVC clubs sitting undefeated in league action, joining SIUE and Belmont who are both 2-0. UT Martin has shown its propensity to score with regularity since conference play began behind a combined nine goals in wins over Austin Peay, EIU and SEMO.
Jill Hildreth leads the team with five goals, a mark that puts the 6-foot-2 senior in second in the OVC in that department. Emely van der Vliet is tied for third in the league with four scores, while Makayla Robinson's three assists not only pace the Skyhawks, but are also good enough for a tie for second in the OVC.
Erica Myers has played in all 11 matches in goal and has allowed nine goals to go along with 40 saves for a .816 save percentage and a 0.88 goals against average.
Inside the series
UT Martin holds a 14-10-1 edge in the all-time series. The Skyhawks have won three straight in the set, including a 1-0, double-overtime nod in last spring's meeting on Mar. 26 in Cookeville.
Photo by Jim Dillon