Sept. 26, 2013
BELLINGHAM, Wash. -
Forward Catherine Miles (So., Anacortes) and Erin Russell (Fr., Briar/Mountlake Terrace) each scored goals and Western Washington University posted its fifth shutout in six games this season with a 2-0 win over Western Oregon University in a Great Northwest Athletic Conference women's soccer contest Thursday at Orca Field on the Whatcom CC campus.
The Vikings, who began a four-game home stand, are ranked No.2 nationally in this week's National Soccer Coaches Association of America/NCAA Division II Top 25 Poll. They are now 6-0-0 overall and 3-0-0 in conference play.
WOU, which was playing its sixth straight road contest, fell to 3-2-2 overall and 1-2-0 in league play.
"This was an important win for us," said WWU coach Travis Connell (11th year, 127-59-19). "This is a team that we'll probably see in the (GNAC) tournament and we still have to play at their place. So to come out and play well against them was very good."
Miles scored her team-leading fourth goal of the campaign and third in the last two games in the 29th minute. WOU failed to clear a free kick and Miles put in a point-blank shot.
In the 54th minute, Russell took a cross from Brina Sych (Sr., Vancouver/Union) and deposited it in the upper right corner from eight yards. The goal was Russell's second and the assist was Sych's third.
"We're going to see that quite a bit this year and the toughest part is to stay patient," Connell said of WOU's defensive style of play. "This will help us the next time that we face it because it gives us that much more confidence."
Connell was impressed with the play of Delanee Nilles (So., Poulsbo/North Kitsap), a midfielder, who started for injured defender Kayla Russ (Sr., Puyallup/Bellarmine Prep).
"It's a huge asset when someone can go in a different position and still help us get a shutout," he said.
Connell also praised the effort of midfielder Ashton Griffen (Sr., Duvall/Cedarcrest), saying she was "tireless, physical and was the motor for us."
The win was WWU's 16th straight over the Wolves and its fourth consecutive by a score of 2-0. The Vikings won all three games over WOU last season by that samescore.
Goalkeeper Alyssa Beauchamp (Sr., Vancouver/Mountain View) made one save in notching her fifth shutout as WWU had a 16-3 shot advantage.
The only goal that the Vikings have given up this year was an own goal.
WWU entertains Saint Martin's on Saturday, Sept. 28 (4 p.m.), in a GNAC counter.
Thursday, Sept. 26, 2013
Bellingham, Wash., Orca Field, Whatcom CC
Western Washington 2, Western Oregon 0
Scoring - 1. WWU, Catherine Miles (Unassisted), 28:54;
2. WWU, Erin Russell (Brina Sych), 53:15.
Shots - WWU 16, WOU 3
Saves - WWU 1 (Alyssa Beauchamp 1); WOU 4(Amanda Rose Johnson 4).
Corner kicks - WWU 2, WOU 4
Fouls - WWU 12, WOU 13
Next Game: WWU vs. Saint Martin's on Sat., Sept. 28 (4 p.m.) at Orca Field on Whatcom CC campus