ASHEVILLE, N.C. – The UNC Asheville women’s soccer team takes to the road Saturday night when the Bulldogs face two-time defending Big South Conference champion Radford at Cupp Stadium starting at 7 p.m.
Asheville (5-7-1, 1-3-1 BSC) looks to snap a four-game winless streak on Saturday but it won’t be easy against the Highlanders. Radford is 9-1-1 overall and a perfect 5-0-0 in league action. The Highlanders will bring a five-game winning streak into Saturday’s contest.
The Bulldogs battled high-scoring Winthrop on even terms Wednesday night on the road before a late goal in the 84th minute gave the Lady Eagles a 1-0 victory.
Head Coach Michelle Demko believes the match with Radford starts an important stretch for the Blue & White.
"These last six games are an important stretch for us. We need to find a way to pick up a few more results and our next opportunity comes Saturday at Radford,” stated Demko. “Radford is sitting at the top of the table, so it will be a good opportunity to measure ourselves in conference and try to get a few points on the road.
“If we come out and have a consistent 90 minutes like we did against Winthrop, I have no doubt we will be in the hunt to win the match,” added Demko. “It will take effort they are not going to let us take three points from them, but we have displayed some of our best soccer against the more difficult teams in this conference. And that is because we have fought for each other, played with pride and let everyone see our emotions. We will need to be that team on Saturday. We showed we can be that team but we must maintain that level every game then and only then will we give ourselves the best opportunity to get the results we need."
The Bulldogs are being led in scoring by sophomore forward Kennedy Garrett with two goals, two assists and six points. Shenny Lenhart and Amanda Knapp have scored two goals each.
Junior goalkeeper Heather Muller is second in the Big South with 80 saves and has posted four shutouts on the year.
Radford is 7-0-1 in its last eight meeting with the Bulldogs. Six of those wins have been by just one goal with three of the matches being by the score of 3-2. The one tie came in the quarterfinals of the 2011 Big South Conference Tournament when the eighth-seeded Bulldogs took the top-seeded Highlander to a shootout before RU won, 4-2. Asheville’s last win came in the 2006 season.
Heather Muller has posted double-digit saves in two of the last three matches with 12 vs. Liberty on Oct. 2 and 11 vs. Winthrop Wednesday night.
Shenny Lenhart’s two goals this year are both game-winning goals in overtime.
The Bulldogs defense is much improved this year, allowing just 14 goals in 13 matches after allowing 62 all of last season.