45-23-9 (.643) mark over past four seasons
ST. PAUL, MINN.-The Central College women’s soccer team shut out St. Catherine University (Minn.) 4-0 in the season opener. The Dutch scored two first-period goals and never looked back.
Forward Alayna Bailey (senior, Des Moines, Hoover HS) picked up where she left off last season with a goal in the 14th minute of the game. Bailey beat the goalie in a one-on-one situation for the score. Goalkeeper Sydney Lunardi (freshman, Bettendorf, Davenport Assumption HS) was credited with an assist.
Ten minutes later Jordan Plante (freshman, Urbana, Center Point-Urbana HS), who came on after Bailey’s goal, scored her first career goal. Classmate Kayla Sunvold (Runnells, Southeast Polk HS) was credited with an assist.
The two teams were statistically even in first-period shots (6-6), but the Dutch made the most of the opportunities with five shots on goal. The Wildcats held the advantage in corner kicks (3-1), but were unable to capitalize.
Lunardi made her first collegiate start in goal and saved three shots in the first period.
The second half was more of the same, as juniors Gabbi Muse (Waukee, Waukee HS) and Brittany Hinton (Davenport, West HS) each found the net early. Muse wasted no time, scoring less than two minutes into the second half. Senior defender Liz Daniels (Oconomowoc, Wis., Oconomowoc HS) assisted on the goal. Hinton added her goal in the 54th minute, assisted by Bailey.
“We had four different goal scorers and three or four different players with good plays which led to the goals,” head coach Mike Kobylinski said. “It was a total team effort. Alayna (Bailey) started it off, but everyone was involved. It was a good night.”
The large lead allowed Central to empty the bench, an important benefit early in the season. Twenty-one Dutch players saw game action.
“Playing our entire roster was very important, especially considering the weather,” Kobylinski said. “I do not remember when we have gone that deep in our bench. Both the time on the field and the rest on the bench were important.”
The Wildcats held the advantage in shots (14-13), but Central led in shots on goal (10-7). St. Catherine tripled up the Dutch in corner kicks (6-2), but was unable to find the net.
Senior Hannah Davy (Cottage Grove, Minn., Park HS) and the Dutch defense helped pitch the shutout. Lunardi and fellow freshman goalkeeper Savana Robinson (Des Moines, Hoover HS) combined for seven saves in their debut.
“I am very pleased with the returners,” said Kobylinski. “Our back line played a phenomenal game. I was happy for Hannah (Davy), who played very well in her home state. I am pleased with the freshman goalkeepers and the freshman class as a whole.
“(St. Catherine) was regionally ranked last year, so it was a good win for our team.”
The Dutch (1-0) remain in St. Paul for Saturday’s contest versus Northwestern-St. Paul. Game time is set for 4 p.m. at St. Catherine. The Eagles are 1-0 after scoring a late second-half goal in a 1-0 win over Wis.-River Falls on Friday.