The women’s soccer team faced off against the Washington College Shorewomen this past weekend. Hopkins entered the game with an 8-0-1 record, not having taken a loss all season. Washington, on the other hand, came in with a record of 5-4-2.
In an interview with The News-Letter, sophomore defender Sophia Stone shared her thoughts on the team’s winning streak.
“Starting off this season, our first season since being shut down and with a new coaching staff, a winning streak has definitely boosted confidence,” she said. “You can feel the team’s energy in the locker room and on the field; every person wants to win, and ultimately we want to be number one. There is definitely some pressure as a result of being undefeated, but it reminds us every team will give us their best effort, and there is zero room for complacency.”
The game started off well for the Blue Jays. Only two minutes into the game, Hopkins earned a corner kick. Freshman midfielder Lilah Isenberg set up a pass to Stone who used her head to get the first goal of the game.
Stone discussed her contributions to the team’s success.
“Being able to score early makes a huge difference in the way the game proceeds,” she said. “Any goal scored changes the tone of the game, but an early goal immediately builds momentum and sends a message to the opponent. That being said, it was awesome being able to contribute to the team's energy and have an early impact on the tone of the game.”
Still, there was plenty of time left, and Hopkins had to put in the work to defend their lead. Soon after Stone’s goal, the Shorewomen got their first shot on goal, but senior goalie Caitlin Hendricks secured the save. Again, within the first 10 minutes of the game, Hopkins fired on the offensive end. Senior midfielder Amaya Ellis hit a shot on goal, but Washington’s goalie kept the ball away from the net.
After that, the score remained locked at 1-0, with neither side able to gain an edge. The half ended with a series of back-and-forth fouls and without the need for saves from either goalie.
Hopkins hoped to continue their first-half success and succeeded in doing so with early offensive pressure. Within the first minute of the second half, senior forward Rachel Jackson fired a shot on goal, but Washington’s goalie secured her second save of the day.
Ten minutes later, Hopkins tried for a goal again. Freshman midfielder Juliana Taxter shot the ball into the bottom right of the Washington goal, only for it to be again stopped by the Shorewomen. But as the saying goes, the third time's the charm. The Blue Jays’ third on-goal shot came from freshman forward Katie Sullivan. Graduate student forward Riley O’Toole assisted on the play. With that goal, Hopkins extended their lead with a score of 2-0 and around 30 minutes left to play.
Washington College needed some offense fast, but instead, Hopkins continued their onslaught. Graduate-student defender Sammy Murrell launched a shot, but this time, the Shorewomen’s goalie was able to stop it. Both teams went back and forth with fouls and shots being traded, but in the end, the final score remained 2-0. With this win, Hopkins improves their record to 9-0-1.
In the same interview, Stone mentioned her outlook on the rest of the season.
“Looking ahead, it is obvious that the team wants a national championship, but it is important to take it one game at a time and to keep increasing our level of play with every matchup,” she said. “As a defender, a huge goal is to maintain as many shutouts as possible and to consistently get involved in the attack to create more attacking opportunities and put pressure on our opponents’ back line.”
Hopkins will face off against the Ursinus College Bears in Collegeville, Pa. on Oct. 16.