The GW women’s soccer team overcame a physical Duquesne squad for a 2-0 win Sunday in a game that saw one Duquesne player ejected. With the win at the Mount Vernon Athletic Complex, the team reached .500 for the first time since early September.
“(Duquesne) presents some problems because they play a really wild style of soccer,” head coach Tanya Vogel said. “I asked my team to settle it down and play our game and for the most part we did that.”
Kim Warner, the current Atlantic 10 player of the week and leading A-10 goal scorer, helped stabilize the Colonials (5-5-0, 2-1 A-10), opening the scoring in the 15th minute. After collecting a through pass, Warner slotted the ball low past Duquesne goalkeeper Kristin Scharphorn for her 10th goal of the season.
After Warner’s goal the Colonials struggled against the physical Duquesne side. The Dukes (5-6, 0-2 A-10) played an effective off-side trap against GW, repeatedly catching the Colonials as they were attempting to collect through passes.
The Colonials held possession but were unable to score again in the first half. With eight minutes left in the first half senior midfielder Kimberly Sanders came close, but goalkeeper Scharphorn saved her shot by knocking it behind Duquense’s goal. Scharphorn also saved a Warner header during the resulting corner.
The game turned irreversibly in the Colonials’ favor in the 22nd minute of the second half when Duquesne freshman and co-leading scorer Erica Carey was sent off with a red card after a tussle in the penalty area.
It was only a matter of time before the Colonials broke the Dukes’ resistance. With 13 minutes left in the second half, Sanders rammed home her second goal of the season, a rebound off Lise Backman’s saved attempt.
“We’ve been working with our team to get even more scrappy and more feisty,” Vogel said. “The individual battles and the team battles are something we’ve been talking about, I was pretty pleased with our performance there.”
Sunday’s success came after a 5-0 home win Friday over St. Bonaventure during which five different Colonials scored goals.
With junior defender Molly Sunderdick out indefinitely with a broken bone in her foot, Vogel said the rest of the team would have to step up, which she said they did.
“We’ve got great kids who are ready and prepared to step up, so we’re going to lose a beat, but we’re not going to lose it for long,” Vogel said.
The scoring barrage began when Warner faked a defender out and passed to a wide open teammate Colleen Ragan, who scored her first collegiate goal.
The score stood at 1-0 into the second half after near misses from freshman Ina Kain and Backman The floodgates opened 13 minutes into the second half when Warner smashed in a rebound after the Bonnies cleared a shot off the line.
Perhaps the most interesting of the Colonial’s five goals was junior Meggan Eckert’s lob from 30 yards out. Eckert said her shot from the back line, that cleared the Bonnies’ goalkeeper’s head 29 minutes into the second half, was intentional.
Eckert’s goal broke the Bonnies will, and from then on the game was a matter of how many goals the Colonials would score. Junior forward Sarah Minnich tapped in the fourth goal after Bonnies goalkeeper Breanne Kraly was unable to hold a cross and Kain scored her first collegiate goal for the final nail to St. Bonaventure.
Sanders said a weekend sweep like this brings a lot of confidence with it. The two conference wins sends the Colonials to their upcoming series in Ohio in a positive frame of mind.
“We have a really big weekend in Ohio, we play Dayton and Xavier. I think that next weekend will be a sure sign of what we’re prepared to do,” Vogel said.