GVSU women’s soccer cruises to easy 9-0 win over Tiffin

GVL / Dylan McIntyre   
GVSU Womens Soccer on Sunday September 17, 2017.

GVL / Dylan McIntyre GVSU Women’s Soccer on Sunday September 17, 2017.

Arpan Lobo

Grand Valley State women’s soccer continued its winning streak at home Sunday, Sept. 17.

Hosting GLIAC rival Tiffin in the program’s final game before conference play, the Lakers cruised to a 9-0 victory in Allendale. The Lakers dominated the game, outshooting the Dragons 25 to 6. The team also earned its fourth consecutive shutout.  

The Lakers maintained control for the majority of the opening half. In the 9′ minute, senior forward Gabriella Mencotti opened the scoring for GVSU with her fifth goal of the season.

After being played through by freshman Gianna Parlove, Mencotti slotted past Tiffin goalkeeper Samantha Ortenzi with a tidy right-footed finish. Just two minutes later, the Lakers’ leading scorer doubled her tally, tapping a loose ball in the box for her team-high sixth goal of the year.

In the 19′ minute, freshman forward Ava Cook was able to score GVSU’s third goal in spectacular fashion. After making a great run through the 18-yard box, she launched a corner kick pass from Cecilia Steinwascher into the back of the net. Beating Ortenzi at her near post, Cook dove to fire in a header. The goal was Cook’s third on the year.

Redshirt freshman Corey Sawall capped off the scoring in the first half, scoring in the 38′ minute. Fellow freshman Hannah Klingerman made a darting run on the right wing, beating her defender to set up an easy goal for Sawall, who was able to slot home.

The Lakers had a brilliant start to the second half, putting three goals past the Dragons in the opening six minutes. Junior midfielder Tara Lierman beat the Tiffin goalkeeper at the back post, heading in a Tracey McCoy cross two minutes into the half. Three minutes later, junior Katrina Giantsopoulos scored a penalty kick to push the Laker advantage to six, beating Ortenzi with a low shot to the keeper’s right.  

Just a minute later, McCoy was able to score a goal herself. Again working on the right, McCoy was able to cut past her defender and push a shot through to net her first tally of the season. It was a good day for McCoy, who tallied a goal and three assists, in addition to being vital for the Laker attack whenever she was in the game.

“It definitely is exciting to get my first start,” McCoy said. “(Coach) was telling us we need bring a lot of energy, so that was my main focus for today. I wanted to make quick decisions and help the offense get more goals.”

Giantsopoulos would add an eighth for the Lakers in the 77′ minute, this time beating Tiffin keeper Taylor Taffo, who replaced Ortenzi. Scoring her first two goals for the program after transferring from Davis & Elkins College, Giantsopoulos credited her teammates for helping build her confidence on the field.

“I think it was really exciting not only to score, but to just get back out there,” she said. “I think the team, they’ve been super motivating and gave me a lot of confidence going in.”

Junior forward Kristy Gomez netted the final tally on the day for the Lakers, holding off two Dragon defenders to place her shot past Taffo. The victory marks the team’s fourth consecutive win, all at home, to finish non-conference play. In this stretch, the Lakers have outscored opponents by a substantial 16-0. 

Improving to 4-2-0 on the young season, head coach Jeff Hosler was pleased with the team’s intensity throughout the game.

“I couldn’t have asked for much more to start the second half,” Hosler said. “You play as well as you do in the first half, I think it can be easy to become complacent and take some plays off. The kids responded the way I wanted them to, and today was just a lot of fun all the way around.”

The Lakers will start off GLIAC play with a visit from rival Saginaw Valley State Friday, Sept. 22, at 7 p.m.  

“Saginaw’s always a very tricky opponent,” Hosler said. “They’re very athletic; they play really hard. We’ll expect a very physical game come Friday.”