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Ohio State women’s soccer falls short in season opener

Plus, the field hockey team is set for their first exhibition game, and the Urban Meyer investigation is almost over (but not quite).

Ohio State Athletics

“I think we did some really nice things defensively in the first half and clearly frustrated Duke and what they were attempting to do.”

-Lori Walker-Hock, Ohio State women’s soccer head coach

It wasn’t exactly the start to the season that the women’s soccer team had hoped for, with the No. 23 ranked Buckeyes falling 2-0 to No. 3 Duke on the road. Both teams were scoreless in the first half, but the Blue Devils snagged their first goal just a few minutes into the second half, and then another later on in the match.

“We were asking players who have not played in specific positions to move and play in some new roles and I think they stepped up and did a really nice job. We aren’t happy with the results but we’ll learn a lot from this. We need to play faster and stay connected,” Walker-Hock, said.

Ohio State had a few chances on goal throughout the evening and forced Duke goalkeeper Brooke Heinsohn to make a diving stop at one point. There’s still a lot to clean up, but there were a lot of new faces in the starting lineup for the Buckeyes, including junior Alyssa Baumbick and sophomores Marissa Birzon and Maggie Samanich, not to mention freshmen Emaly Vatne.

The ladies play again on Sunday at 4 p.m., and will face another tough challenge against No. 6 North Carolina.

“The Ohio State women’s field hockey team opens its 47th season on Friday, August 24 at 4:00 p.m. at Buckeye Varsity Field.”

-Ohio State Athletics

Before the Buckeyes take the field for their regular season opener, they’ll play two scrimmages, the first of which is on Saturday, Aug. 18 against Ohio University in Athens, and then against Michigan on Aug. 20.

The team finished the 2017 season 10-9 and 2-6 in the Big Ten, but the upperclassman are looking to add some new talent and build on last year.

“I am really happy with the upperclassman and proud of how they have welcomed the incoming class,” said head coach Jarred Martin. “I think they have done a really good job of making everyone feel welcome. It’s clear what we are about and what our expectations are for this year’s group. I can’t wait to see where this team goes.”

This will be Martin’s second year at the helm and has an older group of five seniors ready to help the 11 freshman get acclimated to collegiate field hockey.

“And there’s time pressure, we wanted to make sure we have that information as quickly as possible ... about two weeks. That’s the projected goal. The investigation is underway as we speak. It will be finished when it’s finished.”

-Ohio State President Michael Drake, via Bill Landis,

Waiting for the Urban Meyer investigation to wrap up is like watching paint dry, but it has to be over soon... right? Originally, the committee provided a two-week estimation for themselves to collect all of the facts, conduct several interviews, and make their decision about Meyer’s fate, and the university announced it should conclude on Sunday.

Since the investigation began, there’s been daily twists from unnamed sources or relatives ready to talk, and several claims and theories are sure to need additional attention before the committee can get the whole story. And even when it does, they’ll still have to report those findings to the Board of Trustees, and vote on an appropriate coarse of action.

Landis has many more quotes in his article linked above, with new updates from the investigation, including some of the committee members of note and what the university’s priorities are surrounding the situation.

At this point though, I think most of Buckeye Nation is ready for some kind of result, one way or the other, so that we can actually get back to football. However, Ohio State president Michael Drake made sure to note that while the investigation would be over on Sunday, we could still be at least a few days away — if not longer — from hearing the final decision on the matter.

“What we’re doing is an investigation to find out exactly what happened, why and what the context was, etc. I’m going to wait until I know those things to make my conclusion,” Drake said, according to “I’ve been doing my best possible job to keep an open mind and as I said, stay tuned.”

It’s understandable given all of the different angles to the story, and the significance of their findings, that they’d take the time needed to get it right. But, there’s also a season opener in 15 days, and an entire team of crazy talented players we should be getting excited about.

Buckeye bits from the NFL

On Cameron Johnston getting plenty of punting opportunities in the Eagles’ Week 2 preseason game — Dave Mangels, Bleeding Green Nation

“The only positives were that Jay Ajayi ran hard and Cameron Johnston got a lot of chances to show that his practice performance isn’t representative of his game performance.”

On Gareon Conley finally being healthy enough to get back in the mix for the Raiders — Levi Damien, Silver and Black Pride

“Raiders head coach Jon Gruden has said several times they are counting on Conley to return and be a starter for this team. Conley was suited up prior to Friday’s preseason game against the Lions, and though he didn’t play in the game, afterward Gruden said he expected Conley back today and expressed his happiness at that fact.”

On John Simon’s new role with the Colts — Jake Arthur, Indianapolis Colts

“Simon’s focus now is primarily on being disruptive and getting into the offense’s backfield, a role that he said requires a lot less thinking than at linebacker. However, he is blending that mentality with the freedom that linebacker gave him to get to the ball.”