The Baker Orange

Women’s soccer loses both games in California

Story by Jim Joyner, Sports Editor

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The Baker University women’s soccer team hopped on a plane Aug. 28 and headed for the West Coast, where the Wildcats lost two games against nationally ranked teams in the Golden State Athletic Conference.

The Wildcats began the weekend with a 2-0 loss to Westmont College in Santa Barbara, California, on Aug. 30.

The Warriors opened up the scoring early with a goal in the 16th minute. Senior goalkeeper Rachel Theobald made a save on a shot from Westmont’s sophomore Grace Lemley, but the rebound landed right in the feet of senior Malory Mitchel, who then capitalized from 6 yards out to put Baker in the hole 1-0.

Mitchel found the back of the net for the second time in the 51st minute when she dribbled down the middle of the field and buried a shot past Theobald. This marked the second consecutive game in which Mitchel has scored two goals. Mitchel is now tied for the nation’s lead in goals scored.

Baker’s attack was quieted by the Warrior defense all afternoon. The Wildcats were only able to get seven shots off and zero on frame on Westmont’s junior goalkeeper Lauren Dorr. Westmont fired off 22 shots in the 90 minutes including ten on frame. Theobald had her work cut out for her, but came out of the battle with eight saves.

Sophomore Krista Hooper led the way for Baker shooting with three shots. Sophomore Jessica Hillebert had two shots and sophomores Keeley Atkin and Gabrielle Betsch each had one.

The Baker women then traveled two-and-a-half hours south to Irvine, near south Los Angele,s to take on the University of Concordia-Irvine.

The ’Cats went down just 30 minutes into the game with a goal from 2013 first-team NAIA All American senior Megan Daniels. Daniels led the Eagles in goals with 12 in 2013. Daniels intercepted a ball in the midfield and beat Theobald one-on-one to score.

Daniels continued her scoring into the second half with a goal in the 52nd minute. Daniels fired from near the top of the box and beat Theobald again. This goal came directly after Baker’s best opportunity of the afternoon on a set piece from senior Shelby Schiraldi that just missed the foot of Betsch and landed in the hands of Concordia-Irvine sophomore goalkeeper Jazmin Alvarez.

Daniels then scored her third goal of the game in the 60th minute. In the 80th minute, sophomore Alexandra Gerrain scored her first goal of the season on a rebound to put the Eagles up 4-0.

The Eagles’ attack and defense was overwhelming for Baker as Concordia-Irvine ripped 17 shots and put 12 on frame compared to Baker’s one and only shot, which wasn’t on goal. Baker had eight shots on the trip and failed to put one on frame in either game.

The 1-2-0 BU women will be back in action Friday, Sept. 5, against Manhattan Christian College at Liston Stadium.