Following their thrilling wins in the first two rounds of the Missouri Valley Conference tournament, Murray State women’s soccer preps for a semifinal matchup with top seeded Valparaiso on Thursday at 6 p.m. at Brown Field in Valparaiso, Indiana. The Racers are the lone first year members of the Valley remaining in the tournament.
Saraya Young and Mary Hardy helped advance MSU in their last time out in a quarter-final win over Southern Illinois. After trailing 1-0 into the 80th minute of the match, Hardy scored the equalizer on a header on an assist from Camille Barber. After playing all but 50 seconds of the overtime periods, Young was able to put in the game-winner to help the Racers move on in dramatic fashion.
In the first-round matchup with Drake, Morgan Bodker was the game winner in the 76th minute on an assist from her sister Grace Bodker by way of a corner kick.
There are four Racers at the top of the goal scoring leaderboard this season as the freshman duo of Hardy and Sydney Etter join seniors Lauren Payne and Young with each having four goals on the season. Morgan Bodker has three goals this season while starting at center back throughout the season.
Young leads the Racers playmaking efforts with seven assists, followed by Hailey Cole and Barber each with three.
The Beacons won the MVC regular season title and come into the matchup as the number one seed in the tournament. Valpo went 7-1-2 in Valley games this season while going 8-6-4 overall.
Addy Joiner is one of the most prolific offensive threats in the league with seven goals on the year to top the MVC. Molly O’Rear has shown high-quality play throughout the campaign with four goals and two assists for the Beacons.
Goalkeeper Nikki Coryell has been one of the best in the MVC between the posts with 60 saves and a 0.91 goals against average, good for third in the conference.
The Beacons have scored 22 goals while allowing 18 this season. Valpo was able to take the regular season contest over MSU in a tightly contested 2-1 contest on October 16.
The semifinal matchup will be streamed on ESPN+ as part of the Valley on ESPN. Live statistics can be found on GoRacers.com.