Sept. 14, 2014
NOTRE DAME, Ind. – Sophomore midfielder Morgan Andrews (Milford, N.H./Milford) scored twice, including the game-winning penalty kick with 2:23 remaining to lift the No. 19/13 University of Notre Dame women’s soccer team to a 2-1 victory over Toledo in the non-conference finale for both teams on Sunday afternoon at Alumni Stadium.
Andrews’ twin tallies helped the Fighting Irish (5-2-1) stay unbeaten in their last four matches, while also propelling the hosts past a gritty, defensive-minded Toledo squad that previously had upset Ohio State and was playing on eight days’ rest.
“For the most part I thought we played very well,” Notre Dame head coach Theresa Romagnolo said. “We knocked the ball well, and I thought we moved off the ball pretty well, we just need to continue to work on a more aggressive mentality in the 18-yard box. We need to be willing to sacrifice anything to get something on the ball inside.”
The Fighting Irish outshot Toledo 24-4, with an equally wide 12-4 edge in shots on goal. Notre Dame added an 8-1 advantage on corner kicks, with UT’s only try from the flag coming in the final five minutes.
The skillful play of the Notre Dame forward corps led by senior Lauren Bohaboy (Mission Viejo, Calif./Santa Margarita) and sophomore Kaleigh Olmsted (The Woodlands, Texas/The Woodland) helped to create chances in space, something that Romagnolo and the Fighting Irish coaching staff have encouraged during recent training sessions.
“I thought they did a much better job, and we showed more mobility,” Romagnolo said. “We were leading people into spaces and getting a lot of crosses off. For me, it is what we are doing in front of the goal. Having the mentality to jump in front of a defender because most of the time it’s not going to land right at you. Jumping in front of a defender and timing the run to get there is needed.”
After a scoreless first half, Andrews got Notre Dame on the board less than eight minutes into the second period, poking home a cross from Olmsted at 52:30. Olmsted had extended a number of runs down the left wing to set up crosses back toward the box early in the contest, finally breaking through for her first assist of the season on the service to Andrews.
“Kaleigh energized the team with her 1V1 down the side and her ability to serve the ball,” Romagnolo said. “We talked about someone making a near-post run, and the defender was pulled out of the play on the near-post run (on Andrews’ goal). Mo showed great timing to get in behind that first runner.”
The Fighting Irish kept up the pressure and nearly added to their lead five minutes later, when junior midfielder Glory Williams (Dallas, Texas/Lake Highlands) drove a header on target off a corner kick, but Toledo’s Sydney Vinton (who had come on as a substitute moments earlier) cleared the shot off the line. It was the second stroke of bad scoring luck for Williams on the day, as she was denied by the crossbar on a long-range shot midway through the first half.
Toledo (3-3-1) then caught Notre Dame with a rare counterattack and made it pay off in the 76th minute to level the score. Geri Siudzinski sent a long pass in from midfield and Kiersten Johnson split two Fighting Irish defenders to collect the ball before chipping a shot just over Notre Dame sophomore goalkeeper Kaela Little (Tulsa, Okla./Bishop Kelley) and off the inside of the left post for the tying goal (75:40).
Andrews made sure Notre Dame would end up in the win column, earning the decisive penalty kick herself after being taken down in the area in the 88th minute. The reigning Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) Freshman of the Year collected herself, then calmly stepped to the penalty spot and hammered in the game-winning goal (87:37).
“I think Morgan put the team on her shoulders today, and she found a way to get it done,” Romagnolo said. “Sometimes in soccer you just need someone who is going to be on a mission and a find a way to put the ball in the back of the net. I think that’s what Mo did today.”
Notre Dame had the match’s first scoring chance in the seventh minute, as Andrews flicked a header just wide to the left after Bohaboy lobbed a long cross in from the right side. Bohaboy sent a similar cross in less than a minute later to freshman forward Karin Muya (London, England/Burntwood School), but Muya’s header carried well right of the post.
The Fighting Irish continued to push the pace early, as Williams blasted a straightaway look from 25 yards out that rang off the crossbar at 7:50. Toledo goalkeeper Sam Tiongson snared a follow up attempt by Andrews on the rebound.
Toledo logged its first, and only, shot of the first half in the 23rd minute, as a harmless try from deep up the right side from Bethany Thomas floated in to a game Little for the save. Notre Dame closed the opening frame with a 12-1 shot advantage, which included a 5-1 edge in shots on goal.
Andrews tied a career-high with eight shots (six on goal) to lead all players on the offensive end, while freshman Ginny McGowan (Lake Forest, Ill./Lake Forest added three shots in a career-high 71 minutes of playing time for Notre Dame.
Little made three saves in the Fighting Irish goal, while Toledo netminder Tiongson had nine stops, also benefitting from Vinton’s clearance off the line in the 58th minute.
Notre Dame will kick off its second season in the ACC at 7 p.m. (ET) Saturday when it plays host to No. 10/9 North Carolina at Alumni Stadium. The match will be streamed live on ESPN3.
“Right now, we want to get rested and get our energy to be ready for Saturday’s game,” Romagnolo said. “We’ll make sure they are rested, then we will start getting back after it and make sure they are ready for Carolina and ACC play.”
To purchase a season pass or single-match tickets for the 2014 Notre Dame women’s soccer season, call the Murnane Family Athletics Ticket Office at (574) 631-7356, visit the official Notre Dame athletics ticketing web site, UND.com/tickets or stop by the Murnane Family Athletics Ticket Office windows during normal business hours (9 a.m.-5 p.m. ET Monday through Friday). Tickets also can be purchased at Alumni Stadium on match days.
For more information on the Fighting Irish women’s soccer program, follow Notre Dame on Twitter (@NDsoccernews or @NDSoccer), like the Fighting Irish on Facebook (facebook.com/NDWomenSoccer) or sign up for the Irish ALERT text-messaging system through the “Fan Center” pulldown menu on the main page at UND.com.
#19/13 Notre Dame 2, Toledo 1
Sept. 14, 2014
Notre Dame, Ind. (Alumni Stadium)
Notre Dame 0 2 – 2
Toledo 0 1 – 1
Total Shots: UT 4 (1-3), ND 24 (12-12)
Shots on Goal: UT 4 (1-3), ND 12 (5-7)
Saves: UT 10 (Sam Tiongson 9 in 90:00; TEAM 1), ND 3 (Kaela Little 3 in 90:00)
Corner Kicks: UT 1 (0-1), ND 8 (4-4)
Fouls: UT 12 (3-9), ND 12 (5-7)
Offsides: UT 0, ND 2
Records: UT 3-3-1, ND 5-2-1
Next for ND: Vs. North Carolina, 7 p.m. (ET) Saturday at Alumni Stadium, ESPN3