The Williams women’s soccer team began their ECAC title defense with consecutive wins, beating Plymouth State 3-1 and shutting out Vassar 1-0. Against Plymouth, the Ephwomen started slowly. Becky Kummer ’00 broke through the defense at 17:21 and scored the lone Williams goal in the first half.
Plymouth responded with a goal two minutes later, knotting the score at one. The game remained tied until the 64th minute, when Katie Bolduc ’01 scored, assisted by Katie Walsh ’99. The Ephwomen added a late goal by Karen Kelly ’01 to seal the victory. Star goalie Laura Brennenman ’99 notched 11 saves, aided by a ferocious defense led by Nicole Strauss ’99, Meghan Cavanaugh ’00, Katie O’Boyle ‘02 and Ann Brophy ’00.
The defense led the way in the season opener against Vassar, stifling their potent offense. Captain Jenny Powers ’99 commented, “given that it was our first game, we were pretty happy with the way that we played. Our intensity from the kick-off helped us to take control early and we created a lot of offense. We didn’t finish as well as we should have but hopefully that will improve the more that we play together.” The first half was scoreless, as was the majority of the second half. With 14:13 remaining, Jill Caterer ’00 scored the game’s lone goal off a corner kick.
In the preseason, Williams head coach Lisa Melendy emphasized defense. The emphasis on defense paid off as Vassar managed only three shots on goal in the 90 minute game. Eph goalie Brennenman had plenty of time to marvel at the beautiful Berkshire hills, needing to make all of two saves to record the shutout. The Ephs’ next game is Wednesday at Smith College.