Valdosta State women’s soccer team is on the road against West Georgia tonight and Palm Beach Atlantic Saturday before coming home to attempt to get the first ever win against Anderson on Tuesday.
In what was supposed to be an easy game for the Blazers in 2011, it turned into a 1-0 loss and a lot of motivation.
Coach Melissa Heinz is confident that her players will be ready for the Trojans this year.
“We actually got shirts made after that game because we didn’t show up to play hard and lost because of it,” Coach Heinz said. “I don’t think I’ll have to coach in that game because they will be so motivated.”
The (6-1) Blazers are competing on the road this weekend working out a few things before they take the field in their grudge match.
In their second season ever the ladies are off to a promising start but they need to finish games much better.
In their only loss this season to North Alabama this past Friday, VSU let a 3-2 lead in the 62nd minute slip away from them.
The team is focusing and working hard to come out strong in the second half of games.
“We are playing hard and playing smart in the first half, but come second half the team plays a little long ball and keeps us from playing composed,” Coach Heinz said.
Learning to put teams away in the second half will be important the rest of the season, and Anderson, 4-3-1 on the season, would like nothing better than to shock the Blazers again.
One player that is looking to get revenge on the Trojans is Blakely McClellan, who is back from a torn ACL injury managed to get clear a month before she was supposed to.
“What has surprised me most about this season was even being able to play,” McClellan, sophomore forward said. “I should have missed almost a month and a half more but now I’m able to play.”
McClellan, who was tied for the team lead in goals last season with 4, has yet to find the back of the net this year.
Coming off the bench with 3 shots this season, she could be the spark in the second half the Blazers have been looking for.
“We are a different team this year, we know each other better, and we know how to work together more,” McClellan said about the Anderson game. “The freshmen are contributing to the team a lot as well, so I think we are ready to play them again.”