Penn State Women’s Soccer Defeats Hofstra, Win Three Straight To Start Season

Story posted August 29, 2021 in Sports, CommRadio by Austin Groft

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. – Jeffrey Field roared with cheer as Penn State won its third game in a row to open the season. The Nittany Lions bested the Hofstra Pride by a final score of 2-1.

With fans being able to attend games without any sort of maximum capacity limit, the players were given extra fuel to their performance. Penn State’s soccer student section, The Park Avenue Army, showed their support by chanting and banging on drums.

“It is so much fun for us. We have been waiting for it and while we had a lot of fun in the spring, it has definitely been a real treat. We now have a greater appreciation playing at Jeffrey with fans,” senior Kerry Abello said.

Coming into the game, both Penn State and Hofstra stood unbeaten.

Hofstra opened up the game immediately with an aggressive approach. For the Nittany Lions, it didn’t take long for themselves to make some noise courtesy of junior Payton Linnehan. Just three minutes after kickoff, she was able to find the back of the net from a counter attack.

Linnehan has been on fire the first three games this season, tallying five goals and two assists. Teammate Ally Schlegel is thrilled with Linnehan’s start to the season.

“We all know that she is the GOAT and has it in her to take a hold of games like that. It gives us all confidence knowing that she is having this great of a start,” Schlegel said.

Linnehan didn’t only make an impact on offense, but she had several clutch plays on defense preventing potential goals for Hofstra as well.

A major reason for Penn State’s success came from its defensive unit. Coming into this game, Hofstra outscored their opponents 11-1 averaging just about four goals per game. The Pride had a total of 19 shots, nine of which were on goal.

The Nittany Lions’ goalie Katherine Asman was locked in, only allowing one shot to find the back of the net. Abello says having Asman in net calms their nerves and gives the team confidence.

“We can play freely because we know that she has our back and can save us if we need it. She’s always talking to us, giving us information so it is super helpful having her behind us,” Abello said.

Next Thursday, Penn State will take on the Mountaineers at West Virginia to start a three-game road stretch.

According to Abello, it’ll be important to prepare mentally and physically for West Virginia since it will be a tough physical battle. “Going on the road we now get that feeling of being an underdog. We love wreaking havoc in someone else’s house, especially West Virginia.”

 

Austin Groft is a junior majoring in broadcast journalism. To contact him, please email him at atg5271@psu.edu.