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June 22, 2024

Men's and women's soccer faces off against Haverford

By JOSH FELTON | October 27, 2023

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COURTESY OF HOPKINSSPORTS.COM

Men's and women’s soccer both had intense battles against Haverford College over the weekend.

Women’s soccer

The eighth-ranked Hopkins women's soccer team faced off against Haverford College on Saturday, Oct. 21 at Homewood Field. The Blue Jays were riding an unbeaten streak of 11 games, with an overall record of 11-1-2 and an impressive 7-0-1 record in the Centennial Conference, compared with Haverford's 6-7-1 overall record and 2-5 in the Centennial.

The Blue Jays wasted no time asserting their dominance, with junior forward Katie Sullivan netting two goals within the first 10 minutes of the game. Sullivan's first goal came at the 36:22 mark after receiving a well-executed lead pass from sophomore midfielder Megha Salvi, who drew Haverford's goalie Allie Billups out of position and delivered a pass to Sullivan, who tapped it into the open net to open the scoring.

Less than two minutes later, Sullivan recorded her 13th goal of the season, controlling the ball on the edge of the box and slotting it just inside the near post, eluding the diving Billups. Sullivan leads the Centennial Conference in goals.

The two-goal lead held for a little over 12 minutes before freshman defender Ava Venuti and graduate student defender Kacie Filian combined to increase the lead to 3–0. Venuti outmaneuvered a defender along the touchline, sending a precise cross to the center of the box where Filian scored her first goal of the season off a header from 10 yards out.

The Blue Jays continued their early scoring trend in the second half, as graduate student midfielder Lyndon Wood knocked in her first career goal during a scramble in the box following a Hopkins corner kick.

In an interview with The News-Letter, Wood spoke about the moment she saw the ball sail into the net.

“I was ecstatic at my first goal — it was actually my first career goal! I have played defensive midfield and center back all five years of collegiate soccer, so it’s not often I find myself in scoring opportunities,“ she said. “It felt pretty surreal when I saw it go in the back of the net, and the excitement of my teammates made it even better. My whole family was watching too, so doing it for them after all the love and support they’ve given me the past 20 years I’ve played was special.”

Wood highlighted how the team has improved since the beginning of the season. 

“I was so proud of how our team came out and really dominated the game from the start yesterday. As we’ve pushed along, we’ve gotten really cohesive, and it’s evident in our chemistry on the field,“ Wood said. “The first goal we scored was textbook buildup and really summed up how well we are meshing together now. I think we have grown together so much since the beginning of the season, from a good team into a great team. I know we’re going to come out this week and get the job done so we can put ourselves in the best position for postseason.”

The Blue Jays displayed their dominance in their 4–0 win by outshooting Haverford 20–2 and claiming three of the four corner kicks. Goalies Eva Breiland and Allyson Shick each played 45 minutes for the Blue Jays and shared the shutout.

This season, the Blue Jays have scored three or more goals in nine out of 15 games, including six of the last eight. Sullivan's multi-goal performance marked her third of the season and the seventh of her career.

Men’s soccer

The men's soccer team also faced off against Haverford over the weekend. The men’s team entered the game with a 9-3-3 record and a 4-2-1 standing in the Centennial Conference.

Despite the Blue Jays having a couple of early opportunities, it wasn't until the 35th minute that they managed to score. Sophomore midfielder Jackson Shapiro delivered a pass to his classmate defender Will Andrus, who was making a run from the midfield. Andrus advanced down the left sideline and delivered a cross into the center of the box. Junior midfielder Ian Whamond seized the opportunity, striking a right-footed shot into the right post to give the Blue Jays the lead.

In the 70th minute, the Haverford College Fords leveled the score when Thomas Vanni capitalized on a turnover deep in the Blue Jays' territory. Vanni made a quick touch and fired a left-footed shot into the bottom right corner. 

In the 90th minute, sophomore midfielder Scotty Coleman nearly secured the victory for Hopkins with a header following an excellent pass from Andrus, but it hit the crossbar. The game ended in a 1–1 draw.

Throughout the game, Hopkins maintained a 15–12 advantage in shots and a 5–4 lead in corner kicks. Senior goalie Drew Valsamedis made two saves for the Blue Jays, while Dylan Ioffreda recorded five saves for the Fords.

The regular season for the men’s team concludes on Saturday, Oct. 28, with a match at Dickinson College. The game is set to begin at 6 p.m.


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