UCO Freshman’s Career Head Start
Kelsie Eason, 24, hits a header during the October 20, 2017 game against Nebraska-Kearney. (Provided/UCO Photo Services)
The Women’s Soccer team at the University of Central Oklahoma is 7-7-2 and has been led by a player in her first season at the collegiate level.
True freshman Midfielder Kelsie Eason was in high school just a year ago. Now, she shares the team-high in goals for the Lady Bronchos at the NCAA Division II level.
“I wanted to make an impact coming into this year” Eason said. “But I didn’t know it would be like this.”
Through 16 games of the regular season Eason has scored eight goals while also dishing out three assists.
As a midfielder, Eason has the ball at her feet more than full backs or forwards. Whether it is defensively stopping a run or in transition making a long pass; she has to be prepared for either.
“It’s a lot of back-and-forth running, but it’s all about the opportunity.”
For Eason, she said she likes to set up on the opposite side of her leg, crossing her shot across the goal. She also stays at the top of the box allowing her to run up at the ball to give more power.
“I just like to give my Forwards support, so I sit underneath them and wait.”
On the defensive half of the field, Eason said she knows whether to attack or sit back. If she has a teammate making a push on the outside, she can make her run in the middle knowing two more defenders are behind her.
The transition aspect of the game is one thing Eason said she looks to focusing on moving forward.
“I would like to turn my body and be able to stretch the field better,” Eason said.
With less than a full season under her belt, Eason said she already recognizes where her game is and what she needs to improve upon each week.
She added that moving forward she wants to step up and take a leadership role. Something uncommon coming from a true freshman.
As a Business major and first semester in college, the adjustment isn’t only on the field. “It’s just about time management.” If she isn’t on the field or in the classroom, Eason is resting or in study hall.
The postseason begins Nov. 1, with the Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Association tournament. With that Eason said she feels the added pressure that comes with being a primary goal scorer.
“I can’t let it get to my head,” Eason stated. “I just have to play and not worry about that.”
The Lady Bronchos play their final two regular season games Oct. 27 and 29. Both of which are away.