The GW women’s soccer team proved it is the city’s strongest team after beating cross-town rival Howard 2-1 Wednesday. The win followed victories over Georgetown and American last week and a tie against Maryland on Sunday.
Coming off their late comeback against the Terrapins, the Colonials (4-1-1) kept their momentum going on the Howard campus. But unlike last game, in which skill and talent helped them overcome a two-goal deficit, senior Jamie Olson said brute strength and toughness were the keys to success against the Bison.
“When you play someone not as good, you play down to their level and it’s horrible,” she said. “You try not to, but it’s hard to play your game when they’re sliding into you and playing you instead of the ball.”
Hard as it may have been, freshman Sarah Sample found a hole in the Howard defense early and made a pass to senior Kim Warner. The Atlantic 10’s leading scorer then notched her fifth goal of the season only 1:16 into the game, giving the Colonials a 1-0 lead they would take into halftime.
Warner struck again coming out of the locker room. This time, senior Meggan Eckert lofted a ball down the center of the field to Warner, who nailed a shot past a diving Bison goalkeeper for a 2-0 lead.
The Colonials kept the Bison scoreless until Michelle Williston shot the ball past sophomore goalkeeper Anna Handzlik in the 87th minute, but GW held on for the win.
The only negative for GW came when the Bison’s hard hitting took its toll on Sample. A run-in with the opponent’s center back left her with a rolled ankle and cleat marks down her leg and she was forced to sit out for the rest of the game.
Despite Howard’s physical play, Olson said GW maintained its composure.
“There was no retaliation from our team,” she said. “We really tried to keep everything clean.”
Olson said GW is going to have to keep playing at a high level going into conference play.
“We need to pick ourselves up from playing a non-technical team,” she said. “We have to raise the bar again and get another win in.”
The Colonials next play Towson Sunday at the Mount Vernon Athletic Complex at 9:30 a.m.