Women’s Soccer Shuts Out Olivet 3-0 - Remains in Thick of Heated MIAA Race
Saturday, September 24, 2011
By Sports Information Student Assistant Mark DeHaan
Entering its third contest in five days, the Calvin women’s soccer team was looking for some extra energy as it hosted the Comets of Olivet. The Comets, also playing in their third game of the week and entering play with an 0-8 overall record, were not to be overlooked, however.
Calvin was able to control the ball early as junior Francesca Smith was able to put some pressure on Comets freshmen keeper Kourtney Moore. With 31:15 left in the first half, the Comets were able to create a great opportunity of their own as an Olivet striker was able to intercept a pass deep in Calvin’s half and take it on net. Calvin freshmen goalie Lauren Merz came charging out, forcing a shot from the Olivet striker that would go just wide. The Knights would possess the ball for much of the rest of the half, controlling the ball in the Comet’s half.
Calvin’s best opportunity of the half would come with just over two minutes remaining as junior Liz Cancel would put a shot on net that was saved by the Comets keeper. The game would head into the break at a 0-0 tie, with Calvin holding a 15-2 shots advantage. The Knights would continue the strong offensive play in the second half, this time capitalizing on their opportunities.
Less than ten minutes into the half, the Knights would find themselves deep in Olivet’s half.
Sophomore Brittany Hieftje would put a cross into the middle that would be settled by fellow sophomore Kelly Koets. Koets would put a shot on net that would bounce off the hands of the Comets keeper and to the foot of Francesca Smith who would bury the ball into the back of the net. Down 1-0, Olivet would look to respond as it would earn a corner kick just a minute after the Knights goal. The kick would be put into the middle of the box, and then punched out by Lauren Merz.
Calvin would play strong defense from then out, giving its offense plenty of opportunities.
With just over ten minutes remaining, Danielle Carter would net her second goal of the season off a Liz Cancel corner kick to give Calvin the 2-0 lead. With just over three minutes remaining, the Knights would put the game out of reach on Smith’s second goal of the game. Calvin would run out the clock and take the 3-0 win over the Comets, improving its record to 3-5 on the season overall, 3-1 in the MIAA. Playing the whole game in net and earning the clean sheet was Lauren Merz.
The idea from day one has been to take a young squad and to help them understand the collegiate game the speed, the structure. It wasn’t easy early on, and we had some lessons from some very good teams, said Head Coach Mark Recker. We want to take gradual steps to being a consistent performer. Not giving up a goal was a good step we didn’t let down, just kept going for the net.
The Knights now look forward to Wednesday when they will host St. Mary’s at 4:00 pm.