The Blue Raiders (3-2-0) came out of the gates firing with a fast-paced attack and relentless pressure in the attacking third in its Friday night showdown against LIU Brooklyn.
It took eight shots for Middle Tennessee to find the back of the net and it came off the foot of Miya Lennon. Things didn't stop there for Lennon as she would go to collect two more assists, one coming off a driven ball into the box finished by fellow Freshman Hannah Tillett.
The other came off a perfectly placed cross driven in by Sam DeBien. Elizabeth Watts was able to find the goal late off an assist from Katie Thomas. Senior goalkeeper Celeste Barnard recorded the shutout win, her first of the year.
On her third goal of the year
"It was right at the beginning of kick off and Miya, the outside forward, got the ball and dribbled 65 yards down the line before crossing it in. I was there to finish and it was just a great moment."
On dominating the game with 26 shots
"Dominating the game and holding possession most the game was a nice feeling. We didn't have to work as much, they're the ones that have to run around and chase. We're the ones getting to take the shots and have all the opportunities so it makes a whole lot easier on us."
On a clean sheet in goal
"It was good; I didn't have too much action because my team did well out there but it still feels good to have no goals scored against you."
On what she told her defense throughout the game
"Pretty much what we do every game, just stay calm and hold onto the ball. Our offensive was really good today so we had the ball a lot and didn't have to defend as much as we usually would have to. That makes everyone more relaxed and it was a simple game for us."
On nearly everyone on the roster seeing the field tonight
"Personally, I love seeing the field so I know everyone who saw the field tonight is going to take that in and enjoy that time they got to play out there today. Then on Monday when they come back in, they'll work hard to get more time next weekend too."
Head Coach Aston Rhoden
On dominating the game
"Coming off Florida State, we challenged our team that if we take a loss we need to find a way to rebound. I think it was good, especially at home, to make sure we were always in control of this game. We did that well tonight."
On the team's offensive push
"It's always great when you have multiple players score goals. It's great when you have players based on their position are going to impact a game. We talked about attacking down the wing against LIU and two wing players scored, so we we're really happy about that."
On allowing LIU zero shots in the first half
"I think a lot of it was that we controlled the ball well tonight. If we have the ball then people can't shoot, unless we start shooting on our own goal. I think that was a big part of it, but the girls have been playing safe and confident. They take a lot of pride in keeping a clean sheet and that was something we all wanted for them and they wanted for themselves."
On two more home games next weekend vs. Valparaiso and WCU
"We need to continue to play well at home and continue to have the fan support we have the past two games here. Those two things put us in a great position to win games at home. Both Valpo and WCU, are strong teams. It is going to be a tough weekend but it will prepare us well for conference play."
Middle Tennessee stays at home next weekend, playing two games at the Dean A. Hayes Track & Soccer Stadium. On Friday, Sept. 7 at 7 p.m. MT will face Valparasio then on Sunday, Sept. 9 the Blue Raiders will play host to Western Carolina for a 2 p.m. first kick.