Sept. 22, 2016
By Joanne Norell
RALIEGH, N.C. – On a slick night at a previously rain-soaked Dail Soccer Stadium, the University of Notre Dame women’s soccer team found solid footing, collecting its first win in four chances and extending its unbeaten streak to seven games with a 1-0 decision over North Carolina State.
The stolid Irish needed just one goal as they controlled possession for the majority of the game’s 90 minutes, and found their offense in the form of freshman midfielder Alexis Martel-Lamothe late in the first half.
The Irish led the Wolfpack 12-9 in shots, with a 5-4 edge in shots on goal. The Wolfpack held an 8-3 advantage on corner kicks.
Player of the Game
It was a night of firsts for Martel-Lamothe, who collected her first career goal on her first and only shot of the game. By the end of regulation, the goal became her first career game-winning goal after giving the Irish 31 solid minutes in the midfield.
Play of the Game
After withstanding a five-minute onslaught by the Wolfpack offense, the Irish flipped the field and took a throw-in opportunity about 15 yards from their goal line down the near sideline. Sophomore midfielder/defender Shannon Hendricks dropped the ball in for senior forward Kaleigh Olmsted, who dropped the pass back off for Hendricks with a nifty backward pass. Hendricks lifted a cross into the box, finding a streaking Martel-Lamothe for the back-post runner on her first touch of the game, having entered just 18 seconds earlier.
After retaining possession for much of the first 30 minutes of the first half, the Irish saw the Wolfpack respond on the attack, firing three shots and attempting four corner kicks in the span of five minutes between the 31st and 36th minutes. The Irish managed to slow the Wolfpack and push back into their offensive end before making substitutions. Martel-Lamothe entered the game at the 37:40 mark and scored on her first touch of the game 18 seconds later.
Coach Theresa.Romagnolo Says
On being aggressive and sending numbers forwardÃƒÂ¢Ã¢’Â¬Â¦
“I thought we showed good patience tonight in terms of keeping the ball and moving them around, creating better chances for ourselves to attach than we had been. I was happy with our patience on the ball and our composure to keep it and I think that opened up some good chances for us.”
On withstanding spurts of attack from NC StateÃƒÂ¢Ã¢’Â¬Â¦
“In a game like that, there’s going to be different spells like that during the course of a game. I think they had a little bit of momentum and then us getting that goal turned the momentum back toward us. At the end of the game, they were sending a lot of numbers forward and we had to deal with that again and be more defensive, but overall I thought we did a great job. We picked up the runners in the box. We were blocking a lot of shots and a lot of crosses, just doing a great job on the defensive end to secure the shutout.”
On what the Irish looked to exploit coming into the gameÃƒÂ¢Ã¢’Â¬Â¦
“They’re a good team, very athletic, so we were trying to make sure that we’re stopping them because they were scoring a lot of goals. Then it was about us creating more chances for ourselves and then converting on those chances. ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢’Â¬Â¦ I think being able to do that on the road at their place when they had all that momentum (of four straight shutouts) going for them is huge for us. We’ve been battling but haven’t necessarily gotten the ‘W.’ I’m really proud of the group and I’m excited to come home on Sunday (against Pittsburgh).”
Note of the Game
The Irish snapped the Wolfpack’s streak of four straight shutouts, including one against then-No. 7 North Carolina on Sunday. The Irish also snapped their own winless streak, having recorded ties in each of their last three matches.
— 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.