After missing out on the Mid-American Conference tournament last season, the Bobcats were able to overcome the hump and make the tournament this season, setting them up for a matchup with second-seeded Miami. Both teams had very different seasons, as Ohio had many ups and downs with a 6-9 record that included a 4-3 record in the MAC while Miami cruised for most of the season and finished with a 12-7 record overall and a 6-1 record in the MAC.
Opponent: Miami (12-7, 6-1 MAC)
Location: Oxford, Ohio
Date and Time: Friday, Nov. 3, 11:30 a.m.
What to know for both teams:
The Bobcat season seemed always to be trying to balance itself out. The first three games ended with Ohio holding a 1-2 record; that win/loss record would predict the future for this team, as they always seemed to be close to an even .500 mark. They only reached that mark a few times and then dropped back down. The Bobcats aren't a pushover though, as they were able to play competitively against some of the top-ranked teams in the country like Wake Forest, losing with a score of 1-2, and Ohio State, losing with a score of 2-3. Despite their record, the Bobcats are not to be underestimated and will look to push past Miami in this Friday's game.
Miami, on the other hand, ended its season strongly, having a streak of three wins in a row. The three-game win streak to end the season helped its season and bolster its 12-7 record. Despite some on-and-off performances, Miami is also a team to reckon with and will give the Bobcats a tough fight this Friday.
Earlier in the season, Ohio faced off against Miami, resulting in a Miami victory by a final score of 3-1. Ohio was forced to play very defensively that game, as Miami's offense was able to retain possession of the ball for most of the game. Ohio's offense has to step up this game and come out striking fast to ensure that they don't fall into the same trap they did last game against Miami.
Players to Watch:
Ohio's goalkeeper, Macy Lotze, was a huge factor in the last match that these two played against each other. Lotze had 10 saves during that match, which is a whopping 11% of her total of 89 saves this season coming from that game alone. If the Redhawks come out swinging on offense, Lotze will be the last line of defense to prevent those goals from connecting with the net.
Miami's midfielder Claudia Negrete Garcia scored two of her 13 total goals this season against the Bobcats and was one of the main reasons Miami came away with the win in that game. If Miami wants to come away as the victor again, Garcia will have to show up again and put on another spectacular performance.