Laurier: 1 WINDSOR: 1
WATERLOO, Ont. (Saturday, September 16, 2017) – Opportunity loomed large for the Laurier Golden Hawks women’s soccer team on Saturday afternoon against OUA West Division co-leaders the Windsor Lancers. Following a rather tight first half that saw the purple and gold cough up an early goal to the Lancers, the team brought out their best performance of the season in the second half, controlling throughout and rallying to draw 1-1 in front of their home supporters at University Stadium.
With just a couple points separating the two sides coming into Saturday’s match, many expected a closely contested affair. The opening half did not disappoint in that regard, with Windsor and Laurier looking evenly matched from the off.
The Hawks (2-1-4) were doing a good job controlling much of the possession early on. However, they were not able to convert that time with the ball into quality opportunities, with many offensive attempts being thwarted around the edge of the 18-yard box.
The Lancers (3-1-4) were not having that same difficulty, proving to be opportunistic as Jade Samping (Windsor, Ont.) got the visitors out to an early lead.
Whatever spark the Hawks were missing in the first half, they had found and then some in the second half. Displaying a much more aggressive, north-south style of attack than previously seen this season, the purple and gold were constantly pushing the ball up field and firing away on Lancers keeper Kristina Brooks (Chatham, Ont.) outshooting Windsor 13-2.
Spearheading the aggressive play for Laurier was Nicole Lyon
(Kitchener, Ont.), continuing to prove that she is not afraid to mix it up physically with anyone.
The new tactics were paying dividends for the Hawks, as Mackenzie D’Andrade (Newmarket, Ont.) was able to blast away from around the six-yard box for her third goal of the year, getting Laurier back on even terms.
With the Lancers folding under the extreme pressure from the Hawks in the minutes following the D’Andrade marker, it seemed like it was just a matter of time before the purple and gold added a second and potentially more.
Shockingly, Windsor was able to pull a Houdini-esque escape from what was a disastrous situation, somehow hanging on for the remainder of the match to salvage a point.
If the Hawks are able to replicate the type of form they showed in the second half moving forward, they should find themselves among the OUA’s elite in no time.
They will need that sort of performance on Sunday when the Western Mustangs (5-1-0) roll into Waterloo as winners of five straight. The Mustangs are firing on all cylinders, only surrendering one goal to date this season through six matches.
Will the Hawks be up to the task against the new OUA West Division leaders? Show up to University Stadium to find out! Kickoff goes at 1:00 p.m.