SPOKANE, Wash. – Just 24 hours removed from a tough opening day upset the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) No. 21 Cal Lutheran women’s soccer team rebounded with a 4-0 victory over sister school Pacific Lutheran in neutral territory at Omache Field this afternoon.
With the Lutes coming off a season opening a 4-0 shutout over Southwestern (Tex.) and the Regals eager to avenge a 2-1 loss to Whitworth and notch their first victory of the 2013 season, Cal Lutheran used a combination of its senior leadership and talented youth to do just that. The team clearly arrived more ready for the game today, showing a lot more energy.
“After the unfortunate loss yesterday we were really ready to step it up big time today,” senior Kristina Hulse went on, “Yesterday was a day to get out the nerves from the first game and learn how to play with new teammates, so today we were more used to one another and were able to execute much better.”
Hulse led the pack as she was responsible for a pair of goals and an assist while newcomer Nicole Campbell scored her second goal in as many games. Junior goalkeeper Kristin Bailey and the defense from seniors Stephanie Gilbert and Anna Medler and sophomore Mallory Carcich kept the Lutes off the board.
The offense warmed up early and remained active throughout the entire contest. Hulse connected with Bianca Deardorff in the 20th minute. She was able to slide the ball into the lower right corner, marking her first goal of the season and the ultimate game winner, as Deardorff recorded the first assist of her CLU career in her second game for the Violet and Gold.
In the 39th minute Hulse would set the ball up for Campbell who maneuvered through the middle of the box before finding the back of the net to give Cal Lutheran a 2-0 lead midway through the game.
Shortly after the break, in the 47th minute, sophomore midfielder Brittany Eremita was able to lob the ball over the goalkeeper to the far post, pushing the CLU lead to 3-0.
For good measure Hulse went on to add a second goal with just over eight minutes remaining in regulation when Yahaira Hernandez lofted a corner kick perfectly to the CLU forward. The assist was the first for Hernandez who joined the Regals from Long Beach City College this year.
After an injury sidelined Deanna Dakar in 2012, she returned to the field for the Regals today. Additionally, Katie Moyer made her collegiate debut against PLU.
Overall, Cal Lutheran produced a well-balanced attack today, firing off 14 shots, seven in each period and earning five total corner kicks. Deardorff had a game-high four shots and Hulse seized her opportunities with two goals in three attempts.
Pacific Lutheran was held to just eight total shots and the four that were on target were knocked away by goalie Kristin Bailey who played all 90 minutes for the Violet and Gold.
Pacific Lutheran (1-1) was paced by Kaylie Rozell who took three shots while Blake Warner finished with two. PLU goalies Marisa Gonzalez and Takara Mitsui split time in front of the cage for the Lutes.
“We did a better job today overall, both offensively and defensively and were able to finish strong,” head coach Frank Marino shared.
The trip was clearly worth it as the Regals bring back a split.
“It feels great to get a win,” Hulse said. “No one wants to travel all that way and not get at least one good result and I think our team really worked hard today to make sure that happened.” She concluded, “I am very proud of the way my team responded after not being satisfied with yesterday’s outcome.”
Cal Lutheran (1-1) returns to Southern California for the first day of classes before hitting the road again as the Regals travel to Texas for a trio of games in three days beginning with a 5:30 p.m. (PST) kickoff with Hardin-Simmons in Dallas on Friday, Sept. 6.