Blue Demons Push No. 1 Notre Dame in Defeat
CHICAGO The DePaul women’s soccer team pushed top-ranked Notre Dame, but the Fighting Irish scored a goal in the 78th minute to escape Wish Field with a 1-0 win in the conference-opener for both teams. DePaul used a stingy defense and 10 saves by Kelsey Hoinkes to keep the high-powered Irish offense to a single goal.
Notre Dame (7-0-0, 1-0-0 BIG EAST) totaled 24 shots in the with nine in the first half and 15 in the second period. The two sides played to a scoreless tie in the first period. Of Notre Dame's 24 attempts, just 11 were on goal and the DePaul defense forced a number of long attempts from outside the 18-yard box.
"I am really proud of our team's effort tonight. Our team defense was excellent and needed to be to play the number one team in the country," said head coach Erin Chastain. "Although Notre Dame outshot us, we limited their dangerous opportunities to a couple. The majority of their shots came from 25 yards or farther which we invite as we expect our goalkeeper to come up with the ball easily. We are excited to build on this performance."
Hoinkes made the save of the day with just over 15 minutes left in regulation as Notre Dame’s Courtney Barg found herself all alone in front of the net. Barg tried for a goal in the upper-half, but a diving Hoinkes got a hand on the ball for the stop and it was eventually cleared by the DePaul defense to keep the scoreboard at 0-0.
Notre Dame continued to put pressure on the Blue Demon goal and finally broke through when Kerri Hanks started a give-and-go play at the top of the box. She fed Erica Iantorno who in turn pass it back to Hanks on the run and she finished the play with a low shot to the far corner of the net at 77:18. For Hanks, it was her sixth goal of the season and 70th of her career.
DePaul’s best scoring opportunity came in the 38th minute when Arianna Foster launched an attempt on the Irish net. The shot came up empty as Kelsey Lysander was there to make her only save of the afternoon.
DePaul (2-7-0, 0-1-0 BIG EAST) continues BIG EAST play next weekend with a home game on Friday against Cincinnati and a road match at Louisville. Friday’s game is the first half of a DePaul soccer doubleheader with the DePaul men’s team taking on West Virginia in the second game. Kickoff against the Bearcats is scheduled for 1 p.m.
Game Notes: Kelsey Hoinkes matcher her career high for the fourth time with 10 saves... it’s also the second game this season with 10 saves (last, Miami (Ohio), Sept. 12)... Notre Dame now leads the series, 4-0-0... DePaul joins North Carolina as the only teams this season to hold Notre Dame to less than two goals.