Women’s soccer continued their hot run, winning both of their matchups last week. This past Saturday, they defeated the Washington College Shorewomen by way of 4-1. The victory pushed the Jays’ win streak to five games, as they have not lost since they played Messiah College on Sept. 5.
The matchup with the Shorewomen featured the Jays starting off with the same intensity and aggression that allowed them to be successful for the past couple of weeks.
Senior forward Kristen Hori scored the opening salvo in the 14th minute, scoring in consecutive games. Her goal was followed up by a fantastic goal by graduate student forward Michelle Santangelo in the 39th minute, who got on the end of a through ball from senior defender Cristina Madalo. Santangelo controlled the ball, maneuvered her way around the Washington College goalie and buried it with ease.
With a 2-0 advantage going into halftime, the Jays never looked back, completing an offensive onslaught spearheaded by Santangelo.
Washington College cut the deficit to 2-1 early in the second half, but was subsequently silenced after Santangelo buried her second goal of the game in the 71st minute, this time beating her defender one-on-one and finessing it past the opposing keeper.
The final nail in the coffin came in the 83rd minute, off a corner from sophomore defender Katie Whittington. The cross sailed over everyone in the box, right to Santangelo, who was stationed at the end of the six-yard box by the far post. She headed the ball into the goal, completing her first hat trick of the season, giving the Jays the 4-1 win.
Hopkins dominated all aspects of the game, outpacing the Shorewomen in shots by a count of 15-4, including 8-3 in shots on goal, and had an astounding 12 corner opportunities compared to only two for Washington College.
This was Santangelo’s fourth career hat trick, which places her in sole possession of second place on the all-time list in program history. When asked about what it feels like to be so close to the record, Santangelo expressed nothing by gratitude and humility.
“It’s definitely surreal. Having the opportunity to have my name next to a record like that alongside amazing players who played before me is amazing,” Santangelo said. “It’s also heartwarming to have my teammates right by my side and rooting for me as well.”
Santangelo’s exceptional performance did not go unnoticed by the Centennial Conference either, as she was named the Centennial Conference Offensive Player of the Week thanks to her hat trick. It is the first time this season Santangelo has won the award and her third time winning the award overall when combined with the two times she won it last year.
As stated before, this win increased the Jays’ win streak to five, also increasing their Conference record to 2-0. What has been so impressive about this run has been how the team is getting contributions from throughout the entire squad.
“It’s crazy how much individual talent we have. We have great depth, both offensively and defensively,” Santangelo said. “If an opposing team shuts one of our players down, there are more players ready to step up and take responsibility.”
For their upcoming game this weekend, the key will be to come out with the same intensity and level of play that they have had for past couple of weeks. They should be aided by their home turf, which will provide them with a distinct advantage in their mindset.
Hopkins returns to Homewood Field on Saturday, Sept. 29, as they head into another Centennial Conference match-up, this time against the Haverford College Fords.