WOMEN'S SOCCER | Blue and Gray Stays Undefeated
Published: Monday, September 3, 2012
Updated: Monday, September 3, 2012 22:09
In the course of a single weekend, the No. 21 Georgetown’s women’s soccer team (6-0) won more games against Ivy League opponents that it had in its entire history.
A 6-1 victory over Cornell Saturday followed by a 3-0 clean sheet against Columbia Monday kept the Hoyas undefeated after six games.
With Head Coach Dave Nolan sitting at 99 wins going into the weekend, an easy win over an overmatched Cornell squad provided Nolan with the magic number after 90 minutes on Saturday.
Despite the heat and humidity, Georgetown came out firing — and Cornell was a bit awkward out of the gate in their first game of the year.
"It's difficult for Cornell because they are just starting,” Nolan said. “We wanted to come out and set a high tempo early and get them on their back feet, which we successfully did."
Did they ever. Junior forward Kaitlin Brenn started the scoring with a goal off an assist from fellow junior forward Colleen Dinn in the game’s sixth minute.
Just 67 seconds later, the Hoyas struck again when sophomore midfielder Daphne Corboz scored again, this time off an assist from Brenn.
"I thought we looked particularly sharp in the first 20 minutes, which was good," Nolan said.
Georgetown was dominant throughout the half, though, controlling much of the position and outshooting Cornell, 16-1, while taking 11 corner kicks. The Big Red had only one corner kick in the game and that one came in the second half.
Freshman midfielder Eliza Loring scored off one of those corner kicks in the 32nd minute and her fellow sophomore Vanessa Skrumbis scored in the 34th minute when the ball bounced off the post and through the hands of Cornell goalie Tori Christ.
Although the Hoyas seemed to cool off a bit after the intermission, Dinn struck again in the 52nd minute, although the Big Red had an immediate response with a goal off a header just 40 seconds later.
“One of our goals was to become a much better defensive team and the disappointing part of their goal was that it was preventable,” Nolan said.
Corboz struck again in the 68th minute off an assist from Skrumbis, sealing the 6-1 win.
After one day off, Georgetown was back in action again on Monday, when they played Columbia in what was only the Lions’ second game of the year.
“We had talked about in the first 10 or 20 minutes to come out and press them a little to see if they could keep the ball with pressure,” Nolan said. “Considering they’re very early in their season, I thought they did a really good job of moving the ball out of pressure.”
Despite dominating possession for most of the first half, the Hoyas were unable to break down the opposition’s high-pressing 3-4-3 formation, something the Blue and Gray had yet to face this season.
“We started to get a little bit frustrated because after a while the humidity kicked in,” Nolan said. “We’d have two or three people pressing and then the fourth player wouldn’t go and they would break it on the fourth pass”
The breakthrough finally came in the 42nd minute, when junior defender Emily Menges managed a free kick from just outside the box over the wall and into the top left corner, leaving the goalkeeper with no chance.
It was the second career goal for Menges, the first having been scored in similar fashion at Seton Hall last year.
“[It was a] tremendous free kick,” Nolan said. “You’ve got to have confidence to do that. She hits the ball with so much pace that it’s very difficult for top goalkeepers to get it.”
Columbia came out strong in the second half, with a couple of chances in front of goal, but as it has all year, the Georgetown back line remained strong.
“We’ve got two very good center backs and a very good goalkeeper,” Nolan said. “When the team just stays organized … we’re difficult to break down.”
Georgetown’s second and third goals came as a result of goalkeeping errors. First, a 51st minute cross wasn’t properly dealt with by Columbia, allowing sophomore winger Jessica Clinton to sneak in on the far side and tap the ball into the gaping mesh.
Only nine minutes later, freshman midfielder Marina Paul collected the ball at the edge of the box off a botched punch-out and fed Brenn who also passed the ball into the open net, closing the scoring.
The Hoyas next travel to California, where they take on Santa Clara and Stanford next weekend.
Despite their undefeated start, Head Coach Dave Nolan isn’t ready to commit to how good he thinks this team for me.
“I’ll tell you more after next weekend,” Nolan said.
Hoya Staff Writer Evan Hollander contributed to this story.