Photo by Madison Smith / MTSU Sidelines
The Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders (9-5-1, 4-3-1) welcomed the Southern Mississippi Golden Eagles (11-3-1, 5-2-1) at home in a big conference game on Friday night, which was also Senior Night. However, the Blue Raiders fell to the Golden Eagles 1-0.
The Blue Raiders struggled in the first half. They had nine total shots, with only two of them on goal.
The Golden Eagles were the first to score in the 42nd minute, which was the only score of the game.
The Blue Raiders tried to make a come back late in the second half but were unable to even up the score to send it into overtime.
Last home game for the seniors
Seniors Celeste Barnard, Sydney Navarro and Katelynn Traver were all honored at Dean Hayes Stadium for Senior Night. They do have a rescheduled game on Wednesday against North Texas, which will be their final home game.
Barnard and Navarro played together on the defensive side and have grown together on their senior campaign. Although Barnard didn’t play much in her first three seasons, she’s glad she had the opportunity to do so in her final year.
“The support I get from my team every single day is just, it’s hard to even put into words,” Barnard said.
Navarro, who has played all four years for the Blue Raiders, talked about what it has meant to her to play soccer at MTSU.
“I’m definitely very blessed to have been here,” Navarro said. “It’s sad that it’s coming to an end, but hopefully we can continue our run.”
Traver didn’t really play as much for the Blue Raiders with the injury bug getting to her, but this team still means a lot to her.
“Even though I didn’t get to play on the field,” Traver said. “With the team, and how they play, it makes it so much easier to watch from the sidelines.”
Head coach Aston Rhoden was proud of his seniors and what they brought to the table.
“It’s been really good having those players be a part of our program,” Rhoden said. “I’m really glad they have stuck with us for four years.”
The Blue Raiders will play against North Texas at home on Wednesday night. This is a rescheduled game from earlier this season. Kick off will start at 6 p.m.
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