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Ohio midfielder Toye Famodu works around a defender against Indiana State last Friday. Ohio won, 1-0. (Greg Roberts | PICTURE EDITOR)

Soccer: Ohio wins last game before conference play

The Bobcats found themselves in another low-scoring contest this weekend, but emerged from the game with a much-needed win.

Ohio only took the field once this past weekend and emerged with a 1-0 win against Indiana State. The Bobcats now head into conference play with a surge of confidence coming off the intense Ohio State game and the win against the Sycamores.

Remi Famodu broke the deadlocked contest open with her first goal of the season. She headed the ball into the net after Kelsey Pichel fired a shot off the crossbar.

“First goal of the season, hope for many more to come,” Famodu said. “I had a lot of time to think about it. I know I only get a rare chance to score, so I wanted to put it away. That was my only thing, don’t mess it up and take the chance for what it was.”

Famodu played centrally in a three-defender backline that helped keep a clean sheet for goalkeeper Mattie Liston and the Bobcats. Liston only had to make three saves, compared to the previous game against the Buckeyes, when she had to make 12 saves.

“Sometimes my defense calls on me to have to make 12 good saves, and other times they can do it themselves, and I am happy either way but I’m just glad we got the win today,” Liston said.

Both Liston and coach Stacy Strauss have credited the strong performances to the communication of the players on the field. That communication is something that improved as the game went on from the backline all the way to the frontline.

“I thought we were a little quiet in the first half. I think it was improved in the second half,” Strauss said. “I did hear Mattie and Remi talking a lot in the back. (Katie) Kemen ran the midfield, which was good, and Rachael Philpot has been very vocal and that has really benefitted our attack.”

Ohio played in a 4-3-3 formation until last Sunday against Ohio State, when the Bobcats switched to a 3-5-2. The opponent will dictate which formation Ohio uses, but both offer offensive positives for the Bobcats.

Famodu and Liston believe the constant communication is what has made changing formations successful.

“Consistency is a challenge for the next few games. I think we need to maintain a high level of play regardless of the opponent, regardless of all the other factors, officials, or anything else that is out of our control,” Strauss said.

“We just have to play our best, and certainly going into the conference, every game is a battle.”

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