Bulldogs dominate on opening day in showdown of Concordias

By Jacob Knabel on Sep. 1, 2017 in Women's Soccer

RIVER FOREST, Ill. – In its quest for bragging rights among the Concordias, the Bulldog women’s soccer team cruised on the opening day of a two-day event hosted by Concordia University, Chicago. Junior Lauren Martin initiated the run of goal scoring while spurring a 4-0 victory over the Cougars, who reside in the Northern Athletics Collegiate Conference of NCAA Division III.

Fifth-year head coach Greg Henson’s squad is off to an impressive 3-0 start during which it has outscored its opponents by a combined score of 14-2. Dating back to last season, CUNE has won 11 of its last 12 games.

“We’re treating this like a tournament and we want to win both games,” Henson said. “I think we dominated the game in terms of possession and (sophomore goalkeeper) Jessica Knedler had a solid game. She had a great save in the closing stages of the first half. They caused us some problems early, but that was good for us to have to solve. Our back four is getting more comfortable with each other.”

The Bulldogs dominated in the first ever meeting between the two sides. CUNE outshot CUC, 27-11, and quickly mauled the Cougars with Martin’s goal in the seventh minute and then Maria Deeter’s highlight reel worthy tally in the 12th minute. The score remained 2-0 until Sami Birmingham slotted one in in the 51st minute. Leah Shohat added the icing with a goal in the 81st minute.

Knedler made her second start in goal. She earned the shutout while facing only two shots on goal. Henson likes the way the back line is coming along. Shohat has teamed up with freshman Chelsea Bright as center backs. They are flanked by outside backs Jeannelle Condame and Taylor Roby.

On the attack Deeter (five shots, three on goal) and Martin (six shots, three on goal) were most active. Eleven different Bulldogs fired off at least one shot. Assists were credited to Birmingham, Deeter, Martin, Leigha McConnell and Esther Soenksen.

The Bulldogs will return to action on Saturday for the second day of the battle of Concordias. CUNE will get up early for a 9:30 a.m. CT kickoff with Concordia University, Wisconsin. The Falcons, also a member of the NACC, were defeated by Concordia University, Ann Arbor, 1-0, on Friday. CUW posted an overall record of 5-11-1 in 2016. All of this weekend’s games can be viewed online here: https://cuchicago.edu/live.

Each of the Concordia teams involved in the weekend event attended a chapel service on Friday morning. CUC has done its best to give the weekend a feel something like what the basketball Concordia Invitational Tournament has produced.