Handzlik leads women

After 110 hard fought minutes, the GW women’s soccer team ended their match with Fordham in a 1-1 tie Sunday afternoon at the Mount Vernon Athletic Complex.

“We’ve been working hard to create opportunities and today we had 21 opportunities,” said GW head coach Tanya Vogel, whose team played its third overtime game of the season. “One of our goals is to get better every time and we got better today.”

On Friday, the Colonials got a little help from La Salle, as an own goal gave the Colonials a 1-0 win.

After a scoreless first half Sunday, Fordham (5-2-1, 0-2-1 Atlantic 10) struck first when senior Beth Purcell fed freshman Liane Shoenstein deep in the goal box. She sent a shot past diving junior goalie Anna Handzlik for the Rams’ first goal at the 73:08 mark.

“I should have grabbed it before it got to the forward,” Handzlik said.

As the game neared a close, the Colonials (4-4-3, 2-0-1 A-10) were in desperation mode. At the 87:07 mark, with GW on the attack, senior Kelly Lawten delivered a pass to sophomore Nicole Cavino, who put away the tying goal.

In the two overtimes that followed, GW had six shots on goal while Fordham had two. However, neither team was able put the other away.

“I think we played well, we keep improving every game,” GW junior Lise Backman said. “We generated a lot of offense and sometimes it’s just luck on where the ball bounces. We have really been working on our transitions from midfield to offense. Every game we’ve made little adjustments which has made us that much better.”

A highlight of this season has been the exceptional play of Handzlik and the GW defense. After recording a shutout in the Colonials’ 1-0 victory over LaSalle Friday, Handzlik had six saves on Sunday.

The goalkeeper is second in the A-10 with an average of 5.62 saves per game (45 total) this season.

“So far we’ve had a great season,” Handzlik said. “What makes us so successful is that we have two seniors back there on (defense) who have done a really great job.”

Lawten and senior captain Lindsay Bruno have been consistent on defense so far.

The Colonials look to stay undefeated in conference play at Rhode Island on Friday.

“We look at all of our conference the same,” Vogel said. “URI is a tough team at home.”

“We have to always know we are the better team,” Handzlik said. “That’s what it will take for us the pull it all together.”

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