WWU Vikings

WWU women’s soccer blanks Notre Dame de Namur, 1-0

Reserve midfielder Becca Cates (Jr., Poulsbo/North Kitsap) scored the first goal of her three-year career in the 55th minute as nationally ranked Western Washington University blanked Notre Dame de Namur University, 1-0, in a non-conference women’s soccer contest Saturday, Sept. 12, at the NDNU campus field.

The Vikings, ranked No.7 in this week’s National Soccer Coaches Association of America NCAA Division II Top 25 Poll, improved to 3-1-0. They had a 14-6 shot advantage and a 5-2 edge in corner kicks.

NDNU fell to 0-4-0.

“It was a good game and I was happy with our performance,” said WWU coach Travis Connell (13th year, 160-63-24). “It was very workmanlike. We were organized and able to create chances. We scored a goal and then we were able to kill the game at the end by just keeping the ball.”

The contest’s only goal came 10 minutes into the second half when Cates took a cross in the box from Malia Maack (So., Spokane/Mead), a transfer from New Mexico Highlands, and deposited it inside the far post.

“Becca (Cates) has just been pushing and pushing to try and get in the starting lineup this season and playing better and better,” Connell said. “And for her to come in and score a goal for us that turned out to be a game winner, that’s great.”

“We knew depth was a strong point for us, and to have two players come off the bench and essentially win the game for us, I’m very happy about that.”

WWU goalkeeper Ashley Haden (Sr., Brush Prairie/Hockinson) made two saves in recording her third shutout of the campaign.

WWU will be at No.17 St. Edward’s University (Tex.) on Wednesday, Sept. 16 (1 p.m.).