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#20 Irish Battle To 2-2 Draw At #2 Stanford

Sept. 11, 2016

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By Joanne Norell

STANFORD, Calif. — For the second straight game Sunday, the University of Notre Dame women’s soccer team played into a second overtime, this time against Stanford at Laird Q. Cagan Stadium. The Irish found themselves equal to the task, battling the second-ranked Cardinal until the final whistle in a 2-2 draw.

The Irish got second-half goals from junior forward Meghan Doyle, who tallied the first tying goal of the game, and freshman forward Jennifer Westendorf, who responded to Stanford’s second go-ahead goal. Doyle’s goal came in the 52nd minute with assists from Karin Muya and Kaleigh Olmsted. Westendorf tallied the equalizer in the 59th minute on a free kick from 19 yards.

Players of the Game

The Irish were as active on the offensive end as they have been all season, putting five of their 11 shots on frame. They were led in that effort by senior forward Kaleigh Olmsted, who was the offensive leader for the Irish in the first half with two shots (one SOG) and three shots total. In the second half, the Irish saw production from goal-scorers Doyle (one goal, two shots, two SOG) and Westendorf (one goal, four shots, two SOG). Once again, senior goalkeeper Kaela Little was steadfast between the posts, turning away seven shots while allowing just two goals.

Play of the Game

After Stanford had retaken the lead in the 57th minute, Westendorf was fouled just outside the penalty area on the Irish offensive end to set up a free kick opportunity from 19 yards. The freshman curved her low shot around the Cardinal wall of defenders and into the post for her team-leading fourth goal of the year.

Honorable mention:
With the Irish trailing 1-0 out of the break, Doyle registered her second goal of the season. Her goal, from six yards out and high into the left post, came as junior forward Karin Muya sent a cross into the box for Olmsted. The pass deflected past Olmsted and right to the waiting feet of Doyle, who ran on to clean up on the far side of the play.

Turning Point

The Irish came out with all of the momentum in the second half. After pushing into the offensive zone, they earned three consecutive corner kicks in the 47th and 48th minutes, then kept it in the offensive third and rattled off three shots, including two on goal. On the first, Muya threaded a pass up the middle to Westendorf, who found sophomore defender Natalie Ward up the right side, but Ward’s shot hit the side of the net. On the second, Olmsted fed a pass up to Westendorf, but Westendorf was met by Stanford goalkeeper Jane Campbell, who came out to defend. The Irish finally found pay dirt on their next offensive chance with Doyle’s goal, jumpstarting the Irish offense.

Coach Theresa Romagnolo Says

On the overall effort against No. 2 Stanford…
“I thought the first half and second half were very different. In the first half, we didn’t concede a lot of shots, but we allowed them to have possession. In the second half, we changed our system a bit to defend better and find a little bit more of the ball, and I thought we did that and I thought when we were on the ball we created some really good chances.”

On the offensive mindset in the second half…
“I think the system we were in forced them to turn the ball over. We had two frontrunners at that point who did a great job putting pressure on and holding the ball for us. The system allowed us to be successful in the second half.

Note of the Game

The Irish played their second straight double overtime game Sunday, as well as their second straight in the series against the Cardinal. The Irish came out of Friday’s game at Santa Clara with a 0-0 draw in 110 minutes. In their last meeting with Stanford, the Irish also forced a 0-0 draw in double overtime.

#20 Notre Dame 2, No. 2 Stanford 2
September 11, 2016
Stanford, Calif. (Laird Q. Cagan Stadium)

Notre Dame 0 2 0 0 — 0
Stanford 1 1 0 0 — 0

STAN1. Megan Turner (Ceci Gee) 26:14. ND1. Meghan Doyle (Kaleigh Olmsted, Karin Muya) 52:01. STAN2. Megan Turner (Kyra Carusa) 56:13. ND2. Jennifer Westendorf (–) 58:32.

Total Shots: ND 11 (2-7-2-0), STAN 17 (2-9-2-4)
Shots on Goal: ND 5 (1-4-0-0), STAN 9 (2-5-1-1)
Saves: ND 7 (Kaela Little 7 in 110:00), STAN 3 (Jane Campbell 3 in 110:00)
Corner Kicks: ND 9 (0-3-1-0), STAN 6 (1-5-0-0)
Offsides: ND 1, STAN 0
Fouls: ND 8 (1-6-1-0), STAN 12 (5-5-2-0)
Yellow Cards: ND (Rachel Heard, 104:37)

Records: ND 5-1-2; STAN 6-0-1
Next for ND: vs. Syracuse (6-0-0), 12:00 p.m. ET Sunday in Syracuse, N.Y.

— ND —

Joanne Norell, athletics communications assistant director at the University of Notre Dame, has been part of the Fighting Irish athletics communications team since 2014 and coordinates communications efforts for the Notre Dame women’s soccer, men’s tennis, women’s tennis and fencing programs. Norell is a 2011 graduate of Purdue University, where she earned a bachelor’s degree in mass communication, and earned her master’s degree in sports industry management from Georgetown University in 2013.