The Hopkins women’s soccer team won both home games this weekend.
They beat Pennsylvania State University Berks 2-0 on Saturday, and then followed up by beating Christopher Newport University 2-0 on Sunday night.
The Jays will advance to the Sweet 16 to face Dickinson College in Geneva, N.Y.
The first game of the weekend was against Penn State Berks. The game started quickly for the Jays, who pressed their opponent early.
After an initial miss by sophomore forward Rachel Jackson, senior midfielder Emily Maheras scored her 15th goal of the year at the eight-minute mark.
Hopkins heavily dominated the rest of the half. They outshot Penn State 12-3, but the game remained scoreless throughout the half.
Hopkins had two corners and three shots in the last 10 minutes of the period, but none of them connected and the half ended 1-0.
The second half began with offensive opportunities for both teams. Penn State started the action with two shots and two corners.
Then Hopkins came back with three corners and two shots. Later, on a counter-attack, Penn State had another shot, but it was saved. The back and forth action continued until sophomore defender Natalie Farrell scored at the 72nd minute off a cross from junior midfielder Alex Damron.
The Jays didn’t let up after going up 2-0.
They piled on four more shots before the period ended and were very active on the attacking third, not simply playing defensively.
Overall, the second half was a significantly more competitive one. The teams had almost the same number of shots, but the Jays took most of their shots at the end of the game, inflating the actual number of shots they needed to win the game.
Senior midfielder Maggie Coulson explained how Hopkins kept the momentum through the weekend.
“Everybody stayed really positive and did a great job of bringing the great energy on the bench and on the field,” she said. “I think we learned from any mistakes in the first game and that helped us play really well in the second.”
The first half against Christopher Newport was filled with action. It started and ended with a lot of opportunities for the Jays.
Initially, there was some parity, and both Newport and Hopkins got some chances on each end. Then at the 23rd minute, Coulson put one in the back of the net for just her fourth goal on the year.
She explained the elation she felt to put the Jays ahead.
“Scoring in the NCAA is always an incredible feeling especially since it was my last ever game on Homewood,” she said.
This goal was followed by a poor shot by Newport. Then, there was an onslaught of four Hopkins shots that ended with a Maheras goal assisted by senior forward Maddy Rocks.
Overall, Hopkins dominated possession this half, but there were hints of danger in a few Newport corners and other counterattack chances. There were more legitimate chances for Newport — they had a lot more shots than the first half, including a free-kick and a few good runs that made the game interesting.
Hopkins, on the other hand, did not let up in the second half. There was still a drive to keep scoring, and the kept finding chances, much like in the Penn State game.
Newport simply was not able to get into a good rhythm the entire game, which is a credit to the Hopkins defense.
In Newport’s first game of the weekend, they put up 37 shots. Against Hopkins, they only had 11.
There were so many times Newport looked to be cooking up something, but Hopkins stopped their efforts every time.
Specifically, junior defender Mizuho Obayashi had a few spectacular tackles throughout the game with a particularly memorable sliding one near the end.
Hopkins will travel to Geneva, N.Y. for a neutral site for their Sweet 16 matchup against Dickinson College next Saturday at 1:30 p.m.