FAU Women’s Soccer: Owls prepare for C-USA play after a rusty start

The Owls enter C-USA play with a 1-2-1 record.

FAU+begins+C-USA+play+at+Marshall+on+March+5+at+7+p.m.+Photo+by+Eston+Parker+III.

FAU begins C-USA play at Marshall on March 5 at 7 p.m. Photo by Eston Parker III.

Richard Pereira, Sports Editor

FAU women’s soccer is looking to bounce back in Conference USA play on March 5, following early struggles to begin the season.

The Owls enter C-USA play with an underwhelming 1-2-1 record, just receiving their first win of the season against the Miami Hurricanes on Feb. 28.

“There [are] so many factors that have been new to the staff and players – playing in what is usually our ‘offseason,’ injuries, fitness, concussions, COVID testing, smaller squad size and so many new faces to the program,” head coach Patrick Baker said. “Every day we look to see who we are losing to the injury group or if any of them are rejoining the training team.”

Conceding eight goals is not easy to accept, but Baker understands that happened because they played two talented teams on opening weekend.

“Utah Valley is an excellent passing team and we were no match for them. Three days later we played nationally-ranked South Florida and they punished us for our mistakes,” Baker said. “Rough start to say the least, but we have stayed the course – trained well, applied video, and now are starting to get results with back-to-back shutouts.” 

Redshirt sophomore goalkeeper Cassidy Wasdin is doing well as FAU’s main option since being inserted into the lineup after two games, earning two clean sheets, making seven saves, and winning C-USA Goalkeeper of the Week.

“Cassidy knows our system and we gave her a start vs. FGCU and it worked on all levels,” Baker said. “The group did well again vs Miami and everyone is growing in confidence.”

FAU only scored two goals, which is its lowest since 2013. Baker believes that it will take time for the offense to improve due to the young talent they have up top.

“The girls are training at a high level and we are working on crossing and finishing all the time. The non-conference is used to prepare us for the C-USA season and it has definitely done that,” Baker said. “Also, people other than forwards can score as well, and we need the whole team to play well on both sides of the ball.”

Staying healthy, being fit, and playing good soccer is Baker’s recipe for success once C-USA play starts for the Owls.

“Every year is tough and this year will be no different – [winning] back-to-back regular-season championships isn’t easy and once you get to the tournament, it’s ‘survive and advance,’” Baker said. “We feel good about our recent success and crave more of the same moving forward.”

The Owls will begin C-USA play on the road at Huntington, W.Va. against the Marshall Thundering Herd (1-1-0) on March 5 at 7 p.m.

Richard Pereira is the Sports Editor for the University Press. For information regarding this or other stories, email [email protected] or tweet him @Rich26Pereira.