Golden Eagles host Morehead State with OVC Tournament first round bye at stake

Golden Eagles host Morehead State with OVC Tournament first round bye at stake

By Dylan Vazzano, TTU Sports Information Coordinator

COOKEVILLE, Tenn. – The Tennessee Tech soccer team is ready to put a lid on the 19-match regular season slate on Thursday, welcoming Morehead State to Tech Soccer field for the regular season finale. Kickoff is scheduled for 6 p.m. CT.

Having already clinched a berth in the OVC Tournament for the first time since 2009, the Golden Eagles (7-7-4, 5-3-1) will be playing for playoff position come Thursday, staring at an opportunity to earn a first round bye in the conference tourney. A Tech win over the Eagles (8-9-2, 5-3-1) propels TTU to the semifinals of the OVC Tournament, securing a spot as the No. 2 seed in the field of six.

Thursday's match will be broadcast live on the Golden Eagle Sports Network via the Ohio Valley Conference Digital Network. CLICK HERE TO WATCH.

Tech is coming off its fourth tie of 2015 on Sunday, a scoreless draw at Southeast Missouri that officially punched TTU's ticket to the playoff tourney. Freshman goalkeeper Kari Naerdmann registered five saves in the tilt, wrapping up a weekend that saw the Herne, Germany native collect 14 stops after halting nine UT Martin shots in last Thursday's (Oct. 22) match against the Skyhawks.

Overall, Naerdemann is in second in the OVC with an .851 save percentage and six shutouts.

Offensively, Tech has used a balanced attack this season that has featured six different Golden Eagles with at least two goals, tied with Austin Peay and Southeast Missouri for the most in the conference. The junior tandem of Abi Gearing and Kalyn Pruett has paced TTU with three goals each, while Gearing and sophomore Karigan Owens leads the Tech charge with nine points apiece.

Morehead State comes to Cookeville dead even with the Golden Eagles with a 5-3-1 conference mark, having lost its last match, 2-0, at home to UT Martin on Sunday. 12 different Eagles have found the back of the net this season, led by freshman Abby Timm's nine, a mark that puts the 5-foot-10 forward in a tie for first in the OVC.

Senior Kaitlynn Murphy has seen the majority of time in net this season for Morehead, starting in 14 matches for the Eagles this year. The Cincinnati native has is in second in the conference with 98 saves, while her .817 save percentage is good enough for third in the OVC.

Morehead narrowly leads the all-time series, 9-8-2.

Admission to all Tech home regular season matches is free of charge.