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Women’s Soccer Opens MIAA Campaign With 3-0 Win Over Saint Mary’s

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

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Box Score

(written by sports information student assistant Derek Neice)

In the midst of developing a rather young team this season, twelfth ranked Calvin continues to find ways to win, with the Knights’ latest victory coming Wednesday afternoon at Calvin Zuidema Field in a 3-0 rout of the Saint Mary’s Belles as conference play gets underway.

Sophomore Jillian Honderd (Hudsonville, MI) came off the bench and paired up with senior Elaine Schnabel (Chesterton, IN) to play a part in all three Calvin goals and assists against the Belles, and the Knights owned possession through the entire match, posting a 27-2 shot advantage in the contest.

“Anytime you transition to league play, your goal is to win that league title,” Calvin coach Mark Recker commented after the win.  “And with each game you observe things that you want your team to do better and you really see how your team endures the course of a long season.”

“Now we’re looking at one game at a time into our league,” Recker continued.  “And we are hoping that similar outcomes and results will occur.”

Two of the Calvin goals would come in the first half and also within 36 seconds of each other as Honderd and Schnabel teamed up to assist each other on both goals.  The first goal, coming midway through the 27th minute of regulation, was a result of Schnabel feeding Honderd across the middle of the field, who then turned and lofted a shot back to the far post and out of reach of the Saint Mary’s keeper.  That goal was Honderd’s second of the year.

Immediately after play resumed Calvin won the ball and Honderd fed Schnabel an assist in a scramble in the box.  The Belles cooled things down thereafter, and the Knights would go into the half with a 2-0 lead and a 17-0 shot advantage through the first frame.

“She [J. Honderd] has a gift of speed and quickness, and she combines that with tenacity,” Recker said of his sophomore winger.  “What we’ve been wanting from her is consistency and today I think she really wanted to prove a point in terms of what she’s capable of doing.”

As soon as the second half got underway the Knights put together a perfect display of teamwork as Schnabel received a one-touch pass on the near side of the field, took it into the middle towards the Saint Mary’s defense and then passing the ball out wide to Honderd in the corner.  Honderd then quickly made a cut into the box and slotted home a strong shot to the near post, her second goal of the game and third of the season.

Calvin continued to have chances through the entire match as they amassed their 27 shots on goal, but those three were the ones that stuck, with Jillian Honderd and Schnabel either scoring or assisting on all of them.

The win pushes the twelfth-ranked Knights to 8-1-1 on the year and 1-0 in the MIAA, with Calvin still only surrendering one goal so far this season, a stretch that has seen the team outscore opponents 16-1.  Freshman keeper Ashton Hearn (Port Huron, MI) is credited with nine shutouts over the ten games played this year, and she recorded a save Wednesday on one of the two Belle shots.

“The back line has been very consistent in limiting total shots,” Recker said of his defense.  “And we’ve also gotten some very good performance from our freshman goalkeeper, who’s made some critical saves over the course of these ten games.”

“It’s a testament to the defense and to the team as a whole when you think about how we manage shape and applying pressure on the ball,” Recker continued.  “So it’s been a pleasant surprise at this point in the season to have that [good defense].”

The next time the Knights take the field will be October 2nd when they travel to take on Kalamazoo at noon.  Calvin’s next home contest is an October 5th match against Alma at 5 p.m.

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