The Charlotte 49ers women’s soccer team had its fair share of ups and downs in the 2018 season. The team finished just below a .500 record at 8-9 (4-6 C-USA) after losing the last six games consecutively.
The season started out in August, a month in which they were outscored by opponents 3-6, five of which were scored by Georgia, to go along with a 2-2 record. In September, the team would catch fire scoring 15 goals. After scoring 15 times in the month of September, leading to a 6-1 record for the month and an 8-3 record total, the team would only score two more times in the month of October, with a record of 0-6 in the month to finish the year with six consecutive losses.
It was a perplexing season for the Niners, one in which the team would pull out a 6-2 record at home and a 2-7 record away. The team would be 0-4 in games in which the opposing team would shoot 16 or more shots, and the team was 1-3 in games where the opponent scored more than one goal. All together, the team held a 2-4 record in games where only one total point was scored.
Generally it seemed that the team’s problem was scoring points. It may be obvious to say that if the team doesn’t score points, they won’t win, but only once did the defense allow more than three goals and only twice did it allow more than two, allowing three each of those times, meaning the offense was rarely ever out of contention. The team seemed to live and die off of their leading scorer as junior Megan Greene would lead the team with six goals on the season and the team would hold a 6-1 record when the junior would score. Charlotte scored one goal or less in each of the last six games – a stretch in which Greene would only score once.
Coach John Cullen believed that the team could have used a leading scorer like last year’s forward, Martha Thomas, and implied at the end of the 2-1 loss vs. Rice that they will look to have one by the beginning of next year.
“We lost a good player last year on offense in Martha Thomas and we have to find someone to score goals. Everyone has been chipping in this year, but we need someone to chip in more volume of goals. And we are going to work on that come this spring,” said Cullen.
Although Greene played well this season, Cullen implied that the team would play better with a bonafide scorer in the mix. Whether that will come in the form of a new player, a step up from Greene or another player on the roster, it will be found out in the Spring. But as it stands now, the team sort of lacks consistency on offense, and that will need to be fixed before the team can look to compete at a higher level next year.
“It’s a young team. I mean we only graduate Abby Coffey and Amelia Clower and I want to thank them for their service and commitment to the program, but otherwise all these players are back, and the message to them was we never want to be in this position we were in. It should sting today [vs. Rice] and that’s what drives us on starting Monday with individual work and individual time to get better,” said Cullen.