McCoy supplies firepower in third GPAC shutout

SEWARD, Neb. – Another stingy defensive effort pushed the 23rd-ranked Concordia University women’s soccer team to a second-straight GPAC home victory. On Wednesday night the Bulldogs used the first career multi-goal game for junior Jordan McCoy in seeing out a 2-0 win over the visiting Warriors.

The win pushed third-year head coach Greg Henson’s squad to 8-2-1 overall and 2-1-1 in conference action (seven GPAC points). The Bulldogs are 12-1-1 over their last 14 home games.

“It’s been a little bit since we’ve been able to put a multi-goal game together,” Henson said. “Through the first three games of conference we scored one goal. That’s not going to get it done.

“At halftime we made some adjustments and really challenged the players to get forward and be more committed to doing what’s necessary to win the game. I thought they responded well.”

McCoy used her game-changing speed to pedal behind the defense for a breakaway score in the 65th minute. Jessica Skerston’s well-executed through ball led a sprinting McCoy to the goal. After covering roughly 80 yards from end to end, McCoy tucked the ball inside the right post as a Midland defender applied pressure on her right side. The hustle goal gave the Bulldogs a commanding 2-0 lead.

The offense provided by the speedy forward from Arvada, Colo., proved enough for the defensive-minded Bulldogs. Even without center back Leah Shohat for much of the game (left in the first half after being taken out on a slide tackle), Concordia smothered the opposition and recorded its third shutout in four GPAC games.

Reigning GPAC defensive player of the week Chrissy Lind, who totaled 19 saves last week, made six more denials on Wednesday. Although Lind was forced to touch the ball on many occasions, a back line that integrated freshman Maria Deeter, typically an attacking midfielder, rarely allowed the Warriors to place themselves in dangerous positions over the game’s final 45 minutes.

Fortunate to play to a 0-0 halftime draw, the Bulldogs asserted themselves better in the second half. The Warriors squandered several opportunities to take a first-half lead. They held a 9-0 shot advantage at the intermission.

Like good teams do, the Bulldogs capitalized. They ended a scoring drought of nearly 90 minutes with McCoy’s first goal (’49).

“It feels pretty good,” McCoy said. “Coach has been looking for people to step up.

“We had a tough first 45 minutes.  We just had to change what we were doing. We changed our formation. I think that worked better.”

Midland finished the contest with a 15-6 advantage in shots. The Bulldogs made the most of their three shots on goal. Sophomore Jeannelle Condame had Concordia’s only other shot on frame. Still Henson’s squad found a way to win.

“Overall defensively we did a nice job,” Henson said. “It’s really a testament to our depth this year. I think we’re a deeper team than the last few years.”

With the win, Concordia is now 11-1-5 over its last 16 games against conference opponents. The only loss during that stretch came last week at No. 21 Hastings.

The Bulldogs will be back on the road on Saturday when they travel to Sioux City, Iowa, to take on Morningside (7-3-1, 3-1 GPAC). Kickoff is slated for 5:30 p.m. In last season’s meeting, Concordia edged the Mustangs, 1-0, behind a goal from McCoy.