Women’s Soccer Shuts Out UW-Eau Claire 2-0

Posted on October 4th, 2017 by

Sophie Leininger (9) celebrates with teammates after her free-kick goal. (photo courtesy of Natalie Rosenberg, SPX Sports)

BOX SCORE | PHOTO GALLERY

ST. PETER, Minn. – The Gustavus women’s soccer team got back to its winning ways Wednesday, defeating UW-Eau Claire 2-0 for the fourth shutout victory of the season. The Gusties scored a goal in each half to improve to 7-3-1 overall, while the Blugolds’ four-game win streak snapped, dropping to 4-5-1.

“We played really well our last time out against Augsburg, but we didn’t have that edge and grittiness in the final third, so that was a big focus for us today,” Head Coach Laura Burnett-Kurie said. “We knew Eau Claire was going to be physical and direct, and that’s certainly what they showed us. In the first half, we kept possession really well and created a lot of dangerous opportunities. The second half was a really physical battle where we had to gut it out. They changed their shape and we made some good adjustments to that, so it was good to put the ball in the back of the net twice.”

Josie Mazzone on the attack. (Rosenberg photo)

In the 34th minute, the Gusties put together a dangerous attack as Lauren Johnson (Fy., Woodbury, Minn.) passed the ball right-to-left across the penalty box, finding Chase Miller (Jr., Brooklyn Park, Minn.) for a one-time pass to Judith Hepburn (So., North Pole, Alaska), who finished off the play with the sliding kick into the goal. The Gusties held a 1-0 lead at halftime, while outshooting the Blugolds 8-1.

“It was great to see us get numbers into the attack,” Burnett-Kurie said of the first goal. “We talked about sometimes you have to slide and really will the ball into the back of the net and that’s what Judith did. Lauren had great vision all game in order to find the weak side players, and that goal was a lot of the pieces of the puzzle coming together, and committing to it.”

In the 59th minute, Sophie Leininger (Sr., Plymouth, Minn.) took a free kick after an Eau-Claire penalty in the box. She fired a shot over the Blugold defenders and into the right side of the net for her first goal of the season.

“Sophie has been working on her free kicks, she almost had one against St. Olaf, and her goal today was from the perfect range – she just crushed the ball,” Burnett-Kurie said.

Gustavus outshot UW-Eau Claire 13-4, while Ashley Becker (Jr., Farmington, Minn.) made two saves in her 23rd career shutout.

Gustavus stays at home Saturday for a 3:30 p.m. bout against Bethel.

 

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