No.23 Vikings edge Saint Martin's 1-0, sixth straight win, all shutouts

Brina Sych

Oct. 11, 2012

Box Score

BELLINGHAM, Wash. - Brina Sych (Jr., Vancouver/Union) scored in the 68th minute, lifting nationally ranked and league-leading Western Washington University to a 1-0 victory over Saint Martin's University in a Great Northwest Athletic Conference women's soccer contest Thursday afternoon at Orca Field on the Whatcom CC campus.

It was the sixth consecutive victory, all by shutout, for the Vikings, who improved to 11-2-0 overall and stayed all alone atop the GNAC standings at 8-1-0. WWU ran its string without allowing a goal to 540:15.

Saint Martin's fell to 5-8-0 overall and 3-6-0 in the GNAC with its fourth straight loss.

Sych's goal came after a shot from 10 yards by Catherine Miles (Fr., Anacortes) was deflected away by Saints' goalkeeper Ashley Engel. An SMU defender then tried to clear the ball, but Sych charged down the attempt and bundled the ball into the goal from four yards out.

"We didn't have our normal energy level today, but we found a way to win," said WWU coach Travis Connell (10h year, 113-57-19). "Finding ways to win is something we've talked about, and we got it done today."

The goal was Sych's third of the season and her second game-winner.

"It was another big goal by Brina, it seems like all of them are when she scores," Connell said.

WWU had a 19-5 advantage in shots. The Vikings had an 11-1 margin in the first half, but were able to put just one on target.

Goalkeeper Jamie Arthurs (Sr., Richland) made just one save in notching her 10th shutout of the season. That's just one short of the school-record 11 she had each of the last two years, and extends her school and GNAC record for career saves to 33.

It was the 12th consecutive home shutout for the Vikings, six of them coming this year.

During its six-match winning streak, WWU has outscored its opponents 17-0, and for the season, has a 31-4 goal difference.

The Vikings host Western Oregon on Saturday, Oct. 13 (4 p.m.), in a GNAC game.

Thursday, October 11, 2012 Orca Field/Whatcom CC/Bellingham, Wash.

Western Washington 1, Saint Martin's 0

Scoring - 1. WWU, Brina Sych (Unassisted), 67:23.

Shots - WWU 19, SMU 5. Saves - WWU 1 (Jamie Arthurs 1), SMU 4 (Ashley Engel 4). Corner kicks - WWU 2, SMU 1. Fouls - WWU 11, SMU 8.

Records: Western Washington 11-2-0, 8-1-0 GNAC Saint Martin's 5-8-0, 3-6-0 GNAC

Next Game: Western Washington vs. Western Oregon Saturday, Oct. 13, 4 p.m., Bellingham, WA (Orca Field on Whatcom CC campus)


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