No. 9 WWU defeats Texas Woman’s 2-0 with a pair of second half goals to improve to 4-1-0. PHOTO: WWU Athletics
No. 9 Vikings Shut Out Texas Woman's Univ. 2-0
September 13, 2018
DENTON, Texas – Western Washington University women’s soccer scored a pair of second half goals, with senior forwardGabriela Pelogi netting the game-winner in the 55th minute to lift the No. 9 nationally-ranked Vikings to a 1-0 road victory over Texas Woman’s University in non-conference action at Pioneer Soccer Park.
Making just its second trip to Texas in program history, WWU won its third consecutive game to improve to 4-1-0 on the season. The Vikings only defeat this season came against current No. 2-ranked UC San Diego, a 1-0 road loss. TWU evens its season record at 2-2-0 on the season.
For the second straight game, WWU did all of its damage in the second half with a pair of goals coming after halftime. On Saturday, the Vikings defeated 7th-ranked MSU Denver with two late goals in a 2-1 victory, and today scored both goals in the second half.
“This was a really good performance tonight playing against a very good team in a tough atmosphere,” said 16th-year head coachTravis Connell. “Texas Woman’s was a very motivated, hard-working, organized team. It took us a good amount of time to create any chances, but the team stayed with it and got a huge lift from our players off the bench.”
Pelogi (Federal Way, WA) gave the Vikings the only goal they would need at the 54:16 mark, taking a pair of one-touch passes from junior forward Liv Larson (Arlington, WA) and junior defender Peyton Chick (Renton, WA/Kentridge), one-timing it past the goalkeeper to the low near post. It was her second goal of the season, also knocking in the game-winner in the 83rd minute vs. MSU Denver, and her 37th career goal.
“That was a big goal by Gabi with two really nice passes from Peyton (Chick) and Liv (Larson),” added Connell. “We had to work really hard to get shots and even create opportunities, so that goal was huge to get us on the board.”
Sophomore forward Zoe Milburn (Maple Valley, WA/Tahoma) put the game out of reach with a long-distance free kick from over 30 yards out at the 74:34 mark to extend the lead to 2-0.
“We got great contributions off the bench today that really helped us to this road win in hot weather,” said Connell. “Players stepped up when their number was called and that was huge tonight.”
The Vikings and Pioneers were both held scoreless in the first half, with WWU generating a pair of shots, with one on target and four corner kicks. The Western defense kept TWU from taking a shot in the first 45 minutes. Pelogi had WWU’s best scoring chance in the 28th minute when her shot was saved by TWU goalkeeper Daniela Marin.
Overall the Vikings had an 11-3 edge in shots and a 5-1 margin in shots on target. WWU redshirt sophomore goalkeeper Natalie Dierickx (Kirkland, WA/Inglemoor/Colorado State) recorded her first career shutout while making one save.
The Vikings (4-1-0, 0-0-0 GNAC) remain on the road for their next match on Saturday, opening Great Northwest Athletic Conference play against 15th-ranked Concordia (3-0-1) on Saturday at Tuominen Yard with kickoff at 7:30 pm. The GNAC opener for both teams will be a rematch of the 2017 GNAC Championships final won by the Vikings 1-0 in double overtime.
Game Notes…Gabriela Pelogi scored her second goal of the season and 38th of her career…ranked 6th in program history in goals and points…also 10th in GNAC history in goals scored and points (94)…Zoe Milburn scored her second career goal…WWU has now had 7 players account for its 10 goals this season…WWU’s only other trip to Texas came during the 2015 season with a 2-1 victory over St. Edwards’s in Austin.
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