Women’s soccer team looks past losses while preparing for Florida

The UK football team won’t be the only squad attempting to gain a win against Florida in the coming weeks. UK women’s soccer will battle the Gators at Gainesville on Sunday.

The Cats (6-2-2, 0-2-0 Southeastern Conference) have dropped their last three matches after going undefeated in their first eight. The Cats last loss, 2-1 at Alabama, came when the Crimson Tide scored with only one second left in the match. Despite the heartbreak, the Cats are optimistic about the rest of the season.

“Our team has been positive out of it,” Nicola Holdsworth said. “We’ve kept our heads high, and today at practice we were focused. We’ll be fine this weekend.”

Freshman forward Laura Novikoff, who is tied for the team lead with four goals, said the team isn’t worried about the two losses due to their early season start and the upperclassmen leadership. However, she feels the need to step-up.

“We just need to come out with our confidence, and I just need to finish,” Novikoff said. “The upperclassmen have just been great and are always there if we need them, which is big for the team.”

Sophomore defender Julie Hull said all team members share the blame for the losing streak.

“We just have to remember every team faces hardships and hard losses, which is never easy,” Hull said. “But you work through it and put it behind you and learn from it.”

The players said head coach Warren Lipka wanted the team to have a light-hearted practice to get their minds off the two losses. The three players agreed that the practice helped keep the mindset positive.

“We tried to come to practice and relax and not dwell on the loss,” Hull said. “Coach told us to be disappointed but to move on because we have nine other SEC games we have to work on.”

Novikoff is confident heading into the Florida game that UK will regain its early form for Sunday’s game.

“We just need to go down (to Florida) as a team and unit and play as hard as we can,” Novikoff said. “If we play like we can hopefully we’ll come out with two wins.”

Soccer team joins breast cancer fight

The women’s soccer team will be helping raise money for breast cancer research in their Oct. 13 “Kick for the Cure” match against Arkansas. Tickets for the match will be $1 for fans wearing pink. During the match there will be a silent auction of UK memorabilia including a Rich Brooks autographed football and a Billy Gillispie autographed basketball. All proceeds will go to the Markey Cancer Center.