CHICAGO – Only one minute into Wednesday afternoon's match, the University of Chicago women's soccer team found itself in an unfamiliar position: the Maroons were trailing. For the first time all year, the defense gave up a goal. But the hosts quickly erased the deficit and dominated the run of play from that point on to earn a 5-1 victory against Milwaukee School of Engineering.
The No. 6-ranked Maroons moved to 5-0 for the second time in three seasons. Their shutout streak ended at four-straight matches. The Raiders fell to 3-2.
Entering the contest, UChicago's defense stonewalled all four previous opponents, only allowing 11 shots on goal in that time. However, the Raiders broke through onto the scoreboard only 53 seconds into the match. After earning a corner kick right off the bat, MSOE delivered the ball into the middle of the box and volleyed it into the net from point-blank range.
The advantage was short-lived. UChicago had the answer less than eight minutes later. Junior forward Madori Spiker made a dash on the left wing and centered the ball into the box to fellow junior forward Mia Calamari, who buried a blast to tie the match at 1-1.
The run of play permanently shifted to the Maroons for the rest of the match. UChicago enforced its will all over the pitch and didn't allow MSOE to possess for any significant amount of time. The entire lineup constantly pushed forward, making run after dangerous run into the opposing box for chances. In all, the Maroons fired off 36 shots while limiting the Raiders to five. Corner kicks were similarly lopsided at 9-1 for the home team.
In the 12th minute, Spiker put her squad ahead for good. Sophomore midfielder Jenna McKinney, who created havoc for the defenders with the ball at her feet, glided into scoring range before her attempt was stopped by the goalie. But Spiker was right there to collect the rebound, scoring her team-best fifth goal.
UChicago padded its lead just before halftime with another score at the 38:04 mark. Calamari's corner kick found senior defender Lily Wolfenzon in front for her first goal of the season.
MSOE limited some of the damage with a coordinated effort on the back line to catch UChicago offside. It worked effectively in the opening period, as the Maroons were whistled offside five times in the half and seven times for the game.
In the second half, the hosts received two more tallies courtesy of Hanna Watkins. The freshman midfielder scored off assists from freshman defender Clare Suter in the 48th and 62nd minutes. Watkins now has three goals over her past two games.
Freshman goalkeeper Katie Donovan (5-0 record) allowed her first career goal and made one save in nearly 80 minutes of action to earn the win. Sophomore Piper Mik took over in goal for the final 10 minutes of the match. MSOE's goalkeepers finished with 16 saves on the day.
- Sunday, Sept. 18 – UChicago at North Central College, Noon