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Griffons stay above .500 at midseason

The first half of the Griffons’ season has been a rollercoaster as Western tried to find consistency.

Although they made their way to five wins, the fastest in program history, they are not satisfied with where their record currently stands.

Western sits at 6-4-1 on the season, but holds a subpar 2-3-1 record in conference play.

“We have had a couple of losses we shouldn’t have,” midfielder Bridget Blessie said. “We cannot afford to lose any more games in order to be where we want to be at the end of the season.” 

The Griffons have relied heavily on a solid defense and an extremely reliable goalkeeper to stay afloat this season.

The Griffons’ defense has yet to give up more than one goal in a game. This statistic has been critical.

As of Western’s six wins, four of them have been by a single goal. Eight of the 11 games played by Western this season have been decided by one goal.

This well-executed defense, alongside an impressive season being put together by goalkeeper Sarah Lyle, are an excellent combination for the Griffons. Facing 115 shots on the season, Lyle has 46 saves and only eight goals allowed. Her presence in the goal has been valuable and allows for the offense to be able to find a way to victory.

The Griffons’ offense has been fueled by Blessie and Sydney Cluck. The two midfielders each have three goals apiece to lead the team. Between the two of them, they have put up 53 shots, 32 being on goal.

This dynamic duo also share another significant, more impactful statistic this season. Both Blessie and Cluck have a pair game-winning goals. The most recent game-winner by Cluck took down conference-foe Emporia State. Cluck would find the net in double overtime against the Hornets this past Sunday to secure a 1-0 victory.

This victory is one that the Griffons believe could propel them through the remainder of their season.

“The win this weekend really helped boost morale,” Lyle said.

The team is not down on itself.

“We have never given up and will continue to fight for the remainder of the season,” Blessie said.

The goals of the team moving forward are just as high as they have been all season. Blessie, Cluck and Katie Kempf all hope to host a first-round tournament game. However, they also have one more common goal they hope to accomplish in the coming weeks.

“Beat Northwest.”

The Griffons have six games to make the most of this season and find their way to the postseason. Western hosts Nebraska-Kearney and Fort Hays State this weekend at Spratt Stadium. They travel to Northwest Missouri State on October 30.

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