As you've seen by now, Matt's already started up the daily fall sports player previews and I'll be pitching in throughout as we approach the start of the new school year and then get into the larger team previews.
On a team that featured top-to-bottom the most talented roster in the Mid-American Conference, it was easy for the UB Women's Soccer Team's members to get individual recognition because everyone was just so good that you could only talk about them as a team and not as individuals. But one underrated playmaker set to take on a leadership role is senior midfielder Kassidy Kidd.
The Niagara Falls, Ontario native has been a steady presence for the Bulls, appearing in every UB game since arriving on campus. In her freshman season she started seven matches and was second on the team in shots on goal before collecting her first point in her sophomore season while starting 15 games. This past season during the MAC Championship run she started all 22 games, scored a pair of goals, and had four assists while generating the third-most shots on goal. Her first career goal came in a win over Bowling Green, and her second was the game-tying goal in the match against Akron:
Sorry for potato quality, but it will keep repeating so you can watch it more.
While the stat sheet makes it easy to pull offensive statistics it doesn't exactly provide much of an insight into a player's defensive prowess. That said, Kidd and the rest of the midfield have been a big part of head coach Shawn Burke's defensive-minded coaching style. It's easier to generate scoring chances when you're taking the ball away in the midfield and starting there.
Looking ahead to her senior season, Kidd looks to Coach Burke a versatile weapon once again to give opposing teams headaches in all situations. UB's got to replace some scoring with the loss of Katie Roberts and her 12 goals, and the midfield, where Kidd usually plays on the edge, will have to develop a new chemistry with the losses of Courtney Mann and Megan Giesen. Look for Kidd to take the next step in her offensive game as a creator from the wing, and to be a leader on a team looking to fill some big holes up and down the middle of the lineup.
Off the pitch, Kassidy has been a model student-athlete as she was named to the Academic All-MAC team after her junior year, and she was recently accepted in UB's Doctor of Physical Therapy program.
Kidd and the rest of the reigning MAC Champion Women's Soccer team will kickoff their campaign for another MAC Championship August 21st when they head to Philadelphia to take on St. Joe's, though you can catch them in a preseason match August 11th at UB Stadium against Cleveland State.