Women’s soccer down, but not out

Peter Huck

A brisk fall day set the scene for what many soccer fans would recognize as a lopsided affair. Last Saturday, the women’s soccer team matched up against Carroll for a highly anticipated home game at Whiting Field. An attendance of over 200 could not prevent Carroll forward Julia Bell from knocking the game’s lone goal past sophomore keeper Candice Gangl in the 24th minute. That score would establish Bell as Carroll’s all-time points leader.
With 22 shots, 14 on goal, the Carroll offense certainly kept Gangl on her toes and guessing where the next would come from. Her 13 saves helped keep the game within reach for her teammates. However, with only five shots, two on goal, Lawrence needed more than a strong goalie to come away with the W.
An admittedly physical game forced Lawrence to either play up to their opponents or fall victim to a one-sided onslaught. Unfortunately, it seemed as if the latter proved to be the case for this encounter. In the midfield and on the attack, the team seemed to struggle stringing more than a few passes together. On defense, most 50-50 balls seemed to go to Carroll. It wasn’t as if the Vikings had no speed – no problem there – height, field sense, fatigue, or determination are likelier explanations.
Lawrence walked away from the game with a Midwest Conference record of 2-3-1 (3-7-1 overall) while Carroll remained undefeated in the conference. The women’s next game will be a home match at noon on Sunday versus St. Norbert College. The SNC match will be the first of three against other conference foes competing for the final MWC playoff birth. The top three spots are all but taken by Grinnell, Carroll, and Lake Forest. In addition, Sunday’s match will be the final home game of the year, and the last ever for the team’s five seniors.