Saturday, September 24, 2016

Big Sky Tonight: Eags & Vandals dominate openers

It was a good kick off for Eastern Washington and the defending regular season champion University of Idaho on Friday afternoon as both rolled to three-goal victories. In fact, the top three teams from last year all started with wins as Northern Colorado also was victorious at Weber State.

Idaho State 0 :: 3 Eastern Washington ##### 

The Eagles wasted no time grabbing command of the contest against the Bengals, getting the opening goal from Chloe Williams (Spokane, WA) just 49 seconds into the match. Aimie Inthoulay delivered a ball that put Williams behind the defense, allowing her to beat the keeper one-on-one from about 10 yards out. Williams, who already owns the career points and assist records is now within one goal of Cassie Black's record of 24 (2011-2014).

Moments later Lexi Klinkenberg had a similar opportunity, but this time goalkeeper Shawna Hennings came out and was able to make the diving stop in the one-on-one showdown.

The stop meant little in the big picture, however, with the hosts scoring a in the third minute on a corner. Inthoulay again set up the the goal, sending the set piece soaring over a pair of high-rising players that fell to the head of Jenny Chavez about 11 yards out. The assist was Inthoulay's ninth of the season.

Eastern continued to put pressure on the ISU goal, but Hennings managed to finish the half without allowing another goal before being replaced at the break by Katie Hogarth. At the other end, Mallory Taylor made four saves for the shutout.

Saige Lyons put the match out of reach in the 83rd on a ball from Devan Talley, allowing Eastern to put more of its bench into the contest.

MORE - Idaho State [+]   Eastern Washington [+]       

Idaho 4 :: 1 Montana ##### 

Things could have played out differently in Helena. The Grizzlies had a golden opportunity to take the lead in the 20th minute with a penalty kick, but goalkeeper Kailey Norman came all the way down the pitch to take the shot and sent her effort wide of the mark. Three minutes later the Vandals were in front. Moments after having a shot blocked Elexis Schlossarek stole the ball 30 yards out and fired a long-distance effort that Norman's fingertips were unable to fully stop en route to the back of the net.

Four minutes later Kavita Battan followed things up when she forced another turnover in the 27th and scored from near the top of the box to double the lead.

The Grizzlies defense, which came into the match having allowed just six goals in nine games, struggled on the day. Another two-goal burst midway through the second half put the match well out of reach. A failed clearance attempt led to a goal from Olivia Baggerly in the 63rd and a foul in the 65th enabled Schlossarek to find Emma Eddy on a free kick to push the lead to four.

Taryn Miller (Spokane, WA / Shadow WFT) spoiled the shutout for Torrell Stewart, nodding in a Carlee Bates corner in the 72nd minute.

The result ended Montana's 11-game Big Sky unbeaten streak at home that dated back to 2013. Idaho's unbeaten streak in Big Sky play reached 13 matches (11-0-2), including the 2015 tournament.

MORE - Idaho [+]  Montana [+]      

Northern Colorado 2 :: 1 Weber State ##### 

Mariel Gutierrez put the reigning Big Sky tournament champions on the board from 35 yards out in the 23rd minute and Sydney Schroeder made it a two-goal lead five minutes into the second half with a goal that deflected in off a defender. A penalty converted by Morgan Quarnberg in the 88th was not enough for the hosts.

Sacramento State 2 :: 0 Southern Utah #####

Kayla Collins put the visitors on the board 57 seconds into the match and set up Kassidy Kellogg in the 14th minute for control of the contest. Destiny Butcher made six saves for the shutout.

Portland State  1 :: OT :: 2 Northern Arizona #####

Shelbie O'Connor put the hosts on the board in the 21st minute with PSU answering in the 54th through Katie Forsee. The match was deadlocked the rest of the way, but Adrian Nixt found the golden goal three minutes into extra time.

Coming Up - Sunday, September 25

Sacramento State @ Northern Arizona 12:00
North Dakota @ Weber State 12:00
Portland State @ Southern Utah 1:00
Idaho @ Eastern Washington 1:00
Idaho State @ Montana 1:00