Following their first home stand of the year, the Bears were on the road once again, playing two games in Illinois over the weekend. Like last weekend, the team won both games. Although the Bears did not score near as many goals as they did on their home pitch, they still won impressively.
On Friday, Northern Illinois was the opponent du jour. The defense continued their impressive run of form, allowing a combined zero shots, shots on goal, and corners. Needless to say, NIU did not score. The offense did not get off as many shots as they did last weekend, nor did they score as many goals, but last weekend was a bit of an anomaly for soccer matches in terms of shots of goals. This match saw a reversion towards the “typical” mean with Baylor recording seven shots, five shots on goal, and five corner kicks. After 87 minutes of play, Lauren Piercy (remember her?) found her way in to the final third, where she passed the ball to Julie James, who headed it in for the game’s loan goal. That was Piercy’s first assist and James’ first goal of the season.
Today, the Bears were at Illinois Chicago. This game, in terms of scoring, played out almost exactly like the game against NIU. Lauren Piercy scored her fifth goal of the season in the 84th minute following a nice dribble in to the box. The offense returned to their shot-happy ways this match, recording a whopping 20 shots, with six on goal, and seven corners. UIC was able to put some pressure on net, with six shots, three of which went on goal. However, the Baylor defense held to record their fifth shutout on the year.
Overall, it was a successful weekend in northern Illinois. Next weekend the Bears head to Alabama to take on Samford (1-2-2), a team that tied the only team to beat Baylor this season, Michigan State, in an exhibiton match and lost by one goal to Baylor’s opponent on Sunday, Auburn (3-2-0 as of this writing). These two games should be a nice step up in competition and will be a good test for this young Baylor team.