Three games into their inaugural season within the Women’s Premier Soccer League (WPSL), the St. Louis Lions possess a record of 1-1-1.
That’s good enough for four points overall and third-place designation within the five-team WPSL Heartland Conference complexion.
The positive take away from the even ledger is the upward trajectory that the Lions have achieved as their campaign has progressed.
Their season-opening sanctioned match at KC Athletics Pride two weekends ago resulted in a 3-0 setback. A return trip down I-70 West last Saturday to meet KC Courage ended in a 1-1 tie. The Lions returned back to their Cottleville pitch the next day and claimed a 2-0 triumph over Des Moines for their first-ever WPSL win.
With their two-week output, one could say that the Lions are “trending up” because of perpetual growth on the field and success in the standings.
This Wednesday, the women’s outdoor soccer franchise meets their strongest challenge yet in a road clash against defending WPSL National Champion Fire & Ice SC. The Heartland Conference showdown starts at 6:30 p.m. at Althoff Catholic High School (5401 W Main St, Belleville, IL).
The Lions’ historical victory on Sunday was highlighted by a pair of goals from midfielder Allison Verville.
“It (felt) good to finally get that first win,” she said Sunday after the shutout. “We’ve been waiting for it. We got the first one and now we can get some more.”
Also wanting to collect a “W” on Wednesday are defenders Alli Klug, Bella Palazzolo, Madison Schmeid, Brittany Steiger as well as midfielders Maddie Pokorny, Christina Rodriguez, Courtney Reimer, Dani Pearce and forward Mackenzie Rief. In Sunday’s victory against Des Moines, the collective only allowed two shots on net and controlled possession throughout the game.
That is going to be a major missive as they battle the current “queenpins” of the WPSL.
Fire & Ice SC (2-0) currently sits atop the Heartland Conference hierarchy due to higher goals scored in relation to equally-undefeated KC Athletics Pride (2-0).
They topped the aforementioned Des Moines 3-0 at Althoff High School this past Saturday with a two-goal performance from Kailey Utley and a solo strike from Sarah Luebbert while goalie Kelsey Dossey recorded the shutout.
In fact, Fire and Ice’s pair of victories have come at the expense of the Menace, who are currently 0-3. Tara Sullivan netted a pair of goals in the pair’s initial meeting in Des Moines two weekends ago that saw the champs net a 4-0 duke.
That makes the Lions’ Wednesday meeting with the undefeated champs even more intriguing. At what level does Fire & Ice currently stand at as they have only met one Heartland opponent that has yet to record points and goals while the Lions have faced three different opponents, two of which have gained points?
Regardless of the upcoming narrative, the Lions are ready to “extinguish and melt” their Wednesday opponent.
“They’re a great team but I think we’re also very good, all-around,” said goalie Olivia Silverman of the donnybrook. “I think it will be a great match-up and a good test for us, but I think it will also be a good test for them. It’s a challenge and we’re up for it.”
The quad’s next game at their Cottleville field is on Sunday, June17 versus Kansas City Athletics WPSL. Tickets for the 2 p.m. match are $10 apiece for adults and $5 for children ages 6-18.