Penn State women’s soccer shuts out West Virginia to remain undefeated
UNIVERSITY PARK, PA — For the second straight contest, Penn State shut out its opponent as it blanked West Virginia 2-0.
The Nittany Lions got off to a flying start, with Penelope Hocking and Payton Linnehan leading the offensive charge.
Despite the blue and white firing on all cylinders to open the game, West Virginia staved off its attack with the Mountaineers' defense playing rock solid.
Penn State was able to control the field at most times in the beginning as the ball rarely crossed the middle of the field and played stout defense throughout the first half.
Although it's just three games into the season, coach Erica Dambach is extremely proud of her backline.
“They are talented, but more importantly they are playing as a unit, and that’s hard to grow,” Dambach said.
The Nittany Lions dominated the first half with offensive chances, but West Virginia goalie Kayza Massey was excellent with five saves and zero goals allowed on eleven shots.
The Mountaineers started to get some pressure in the last five minutes of the half by getting three shots in on Penn State goalkeeper Katherine Asman. Even with this, there was a lot more offensive zone time for the Nittany Lions in the first half, but the score remained tight at zero.
West Virginia then came out of the half, putting a lot of pressure on the blue and white, but then Penn State responded to the pressure with a goal by Jordan Canniff. The goal by Canniff was much-needed, and it gave the team a huge boost.
“The foundation feels like it’s there, the mentality feels like it’s there, the soccer we can keep growing, but without that mentality, that’s the work you do in the off-season.”
The physical game began to pick up as the Mountaineers received a yellow card and a lot of pushing and shoving during play continued.
With the 1-0 lead, the Nittany Lions wouldn’t let up as Mieke Schiemann scored her first collegiate goal and put Penn State up by two. Almost immediately after the goal, Penn State continued to apply pressure with a few great opportunities by Hocking.
West Virginia continued to try and get things going on offense, but the Nittany Lions held them outside the box as they attempted to score their first goal of the match.
The Nittany Lions began to run out the clock with a lot of passing and substitutions to keep the players fresh and not worn out.
With about five minutes left in the game, Dilary Heredia-Beltran received a red card and was ejected from the match on the West Virginia side.
Katherine Asman made a diving stop to continue the shutout. The Mountaineers failed to apply much pressure in the last five minutes of the game as the Nittany Lions sealed the shutout at home.
James Morrison is a junior majoring in broadcast journalism. To contact him, email email@example.com.
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