GVSU soccer scores 11 goals in shutout victory over Northwood

GVL / Emily Frye
Gabriella Mencotti takes a ball down the field during the game against SVSU on Friday September 22, 2017.

GVL / Emily Frye Gabriella Mencotti takes a ball down the field during the game against SVSU on Friday September 22, 2017.

Arpan Lobo

The Grand Valley State women’s soccer team continued its success against its GLIAC opponents Sunday, Sept. 24, in blowout fashion.

Hosting Northwood at home Sunday, Sept. 24, the No. 7 ranked Lakers defeated the Timberwolves 11-0, improving their record to 6-2 on the season. Playing in the final match of a six-game home stand, GVSU achieved a 2-0 start in GLIAC play.

The Lakers possessed the edge in skill, as well as conditioning, outplaying the Timberwolves for the entirety of the match. The game concluded a home stand that saw GVSU go a perfect 6-0, in which they outscored their opponents 30-0. The 11 goals that the Lakers put past Northwood equal the team’s best under head coach Jeff Hosler.

In the opening half, the Lakers imposed total control on Northwood. In the 10′ minute, freshman forward Ava Cook opened the scoring with a composed left-footed finish for her third goal of the year. Senior midfielder Dani Johnson assisted Cook on the play, feeding her with a diagonal pass from the midfield.

Just three minutes later, junior fullback Madz Ham blasted a shot past the Northwood keeper from outside the box. It was the defender’s first on the season. In the 20′ minute, Cook created another opportunity, this time winning a penalty after drawing a foul in the box. Junior forward Katrina Giantsopoulos converted the penalty kick for her third goal of the season, driving her shot low and to the right of the keeper.

Gianna Parlove pushed GVSU’s lead to 4-0 just four minutes later, scoring her second of the year. The freshman forward scored after being played in by junior midfielder Tara Lierman. Corey Sawall capped off the Laker’s first half scoring, beating a Northwood defender to get her third goal of the year. Hannah Klingerman was credited with an assist on the play.

The Lakers opened the second half with a flurry of goals, scoring three within the first ten minutes. First, senior forward and team-leading scorer Gabriella Mencotti made a sensational solo effort to score her seventh of the year. After getting the ball at the halfway line, Mencotti turned and dribbled past the Northwood defense, eventually beating the keeper with a neat, low finish.

Mencotti scored again just 87 seconds later, pushing the Lakers’ lead to seven. Giantsopoulos netted her second of the day two minutes later. In the 65′ minute, junior forward Kristy Gomez tapped in a rebound to make it 9-0. Senior winger Sara Stevens rocketed in the Laker’s 10th
with a powerful effort over the keeper to push the Laker advantage to double digits. 

Finally, Gomez converted her second of the game with a penalty kick in the 86′ minute to make it 11-0. Gomez once again echoed the team’s desire to start every half off with intensity.

“We were focusing on that first five minutes to make an impression on the game,” Gomez said.  “It was hot on both sides, but we wanted to make sure that we did better.”

The game was played under intense weather, as the temperature at kickoff was 92 degrees. The Lakers credited their ability to withstand the heat to the team’s condition.

“We knew it was going to be hot,” Stevens said. “(The) coaches have been saying ‘Carry your water bottle with you’ for the past three days.”

The team’s focus will now switch to a road matchup against Quincy University Wednesday, Sept. 27, at 1 p.m. The Hawks are the 15th ranked team in Division II.

“It’s a huge game,” Hosler said. “(They’re a) very good opponent, and we have a lot of history with Quincy over the years. They’re a very talented side; they’re a very experienced side. They’ll be well-prepared.”

“They’re going to be really good, and we know we have to go out and play our hardest,” Stevens said.  

The game will be the team’s lone road contest before returning to Allendale for a GLIAC matchup with Ferris State Sunday, Sept. 29.