CARDS HOPE ADDITIONS WILL BOOST SCORING AND BOOST 2023 CHANCES
There weren't many satisfied with last season's 6-8-2 record for Louisville women's soccer. Louisville managed only 13 goals, while allowing 22. A 3-7 ACC mark kept them out of the conference tournament and they went 3-4-1 at Lynn Stadium.
So, head Coach of the Louisville WSOC program, and her assistants went to work. Job #1 was to find some scorers. Gone were Maisie Whitsett and Karson Cherry, who was the leading scorer in 2022. The coaches brought in five transfers and five freshmen -- roughly 1/3 of the roster we'll see in 2023. Two Europeans -- Viktoria Wik and Fiona Gai(ss)er.. My keyboard doesn't have the weird "b" ...which, in German sounds like "ss", so we'll go with the pronunciation spelling. (Good luck with that one, ESPN and ACC TV announcers.) She's one we'll be developing or seeking out a nickname for pretty soon, I expect. Fiona had seven goals for her German squad Bayern Munich and has been on the German Women's Youth National team. Victoria represented Denmark on their U-17 National squad.
They sound like they could be scorers and play forward (Fiona) and midfielder (Viktoria). We'll watch them closely.
Karsyn Cherry does return. She's the defender who was the Cards second-leading scorer and the only other Card who scored more than one goal last season beside the departed Whitsett.
Consider this...Louisville WSOC lost four games by just one goal last year. So, eight more goals in those four games and the Cards are 10-4-2 Allowing just 1.38 goals a contest, the defense took care of business for the most part, and -- don't forget -- the ACC had five schools in the top ten . There's not a tougher conference in women's soccer than the ACC and North Carolina, Florida State, Duke, Noter Dame, Virginia and Pittsburgh all promise to be challenging foes in 2023.
Only three of the 14 schools that play ACC WSOC had losing overall records last year and North Carolina defeated FSU in the national semifinals to face UCLA. The Bruins took the title. Only four ACC squads made the 32 team tournament.
The Cards do get FSU in Lynn Stadium year. It'll be one you don't want to miss.
I'll be interviewing head coach Ferguson-Dayes Tuesday and will run the interview (along with my Justine Sowry interview) in my Wednesday article....so, don't miss it ! "Coach KFD" begins her 24th season at the helm of the program...she's got seniority over all the Cardinals coaches on campus.