Redbirds Kickoff MVC Play In Evansville
Written by Jose Sandoval on February 26, 2021
Photo courtesy of goredbirds.com
NORMAL, Ill.- The Illinois State women’s soccer team will travel to Evansville, Indiana to take on the Purple Aces on Saturday. This will be the first Missouri Valley Conference game for both teams.
For the Redbirds, they come into this matchup following a 3-1 loss against St. Louis last week. Redshirt senior Abby Basler logged in 90 minutes and scored the only goal for the Redbirds. Basler expands on what changes need to be made in order to defeat Evansville.
“Our first two regular season games, they were gonna be learning experiences,” said Basler. “We had a pre-game plan, halftime we talked about it, and post-game. We’re really just trying to take those steps to learn. Now this Saturday it’s a whole new season. Conference time is totally different then regular season so I think our mentality going into this weekend is finally “let’s put everything we’ve been doing at practice and apply it to this weekend.”
The Redbirds also come into Saturday’s matchup projected to finish second in conference play even though they finished last season with a conference record of 6-1 and reached the Valley Championship. Head Coach Brad Silvey expanded on if this gives the Redbirds extra motivation.
“Absolutely, it means that we have some work to do,” said Coach Silvey. “ I feel like we have some unfinished business within the valley and we’re excited to have the support of our peers and know that we’re gonna finish near the top of the table but we as a team know that we have work to do. I just have been really pleased with the mindset, the mentality, the approach, and the leadership within our team up to this point and time.”
Illinois State will look to seniors Natalie Vaughn-Low, Alissa Ramsden, and Abby Basler if they want to repeat and exceed their performance from last season. Basler expanded on her expectations for this season.
“I have really high expectations for this team and this program,” said Basler. “At the end of the conference season, of course I expect a regular season trophy and a ring on all of our fingers. That’s no doubt what I expect from this team. From day to day, it’s really all about enjoying it. That is what our main thing is this year is just having a fun, positive, competitive edge and coming every single day to practice just like that.”