Soccer finds golden foot, scores big in weekend wins

Joe Maher-Edgin

The Grand Valley State University women’s soccer team connected two back-to-back shutout wins over the weekend, defeating Michigan Technological University 4-0 on Friday and No. 13 Northern Michigan 2-0 on Sunday.

GVSU (3-0-2, 3-0 GLIAC) played its first game under the lights this season against Michigan Tech Friday night looking to continue its unbeaten record against the Huskies after defeating Michigan Tech (2-3-1, 0-3-1 GLIAC) twice in 2010. The Lakers had been plagued by goal scoring problems in their first three games of the season. Prior to Friday, GVSU had only scored three times off of 74 shots.

GVSU’s struggles ended when junior forward Ashley Botts opened the scoring with an unassisted goal from just outside the goal box. The Lakers continued five minutes later when senior forward Lindsey Marlow set up Juane Odendaal with a pass from the 18-yard line. The goal was GVSU’s second of the first half and Odendaal’s first as a Laker. “It was pretty exciting,” she said. “Lindsey and I didn’t even know who was going to take the shot, so I just went and I took it. It feels really good to have scored.”

Botts tucked away her second goal of the night to the far side of goal after beating Michigan Tech goalkeeper MaryBeth Spoehr 1-on-1 in the second half. With a minute remaining in the game, junior forward Maria Brown floated a lobbed shot, off balance from just inside the right, 18-yard line. It was over the the reach of Michigan Tech’s Spoehr and it found the far, side netting. Parise made four saves in the win, two of which were desperate, diving saves in the second half that parried away well-struck, Husky opportunities.

The Lakers continued their weekend success Sunday, defeating No. 13 Northern Michigan 2-0. Botts scored both goals in the 2-0 victory over the Wildcats, moving swiftly around a Wildcat defender in the first half and found the left side of the net to score GVSU’s first. She then fired a penalty kick into the upper right corner in the second half.

The Laker’s played most of the second half with a player short after forward Kayla Addison was sent off in the 51st minute. Addison was tripped inside the penalty area, but the referee did not award a penalty kick. She was then red-carded for verbal dissent toward the referee.

“You never agree with some of the calls the official makes and I don’t agree with that one,” head coach Dave Dilanni said after the game. “But that was probably one of the best team wins we’ve had in my career here, to be down a player, to stay together and not only preserve a 1-0 lead, but to get a second goal…I was really proud of our kids.”

Ashley Botts said her team stayed in the game following Addison’s ejection. “Her presence was missed out there,” Botts explained. “It’s always rough having to play a man down, but I think we did really well getting into the swing of things.” The Lakers look to remain unbeaten in their next game away against Indianapolis Tuesday at 5 p.m.

[email protected]