WU Opens Women's Soccer Season with 1-0 Win over Oregon Tech

By Robert McKinney, Athletics Communications Director, (503) 370-6110

SALEM, ORE. -- Freshman midfielder Stephanie Skelly (Poulsbo, WA/North Kitsap HS) was playing in her first collegiate game when Willamette University took on Oregon Institute of Technology on Friday, Aug. 29 at Sparks Field. Meanwhile, new Willamette Head Coach Hillary Arthur was leading the Bearcats for the first time. It turned out to be a solid start for player and coach, as Skelly provided the game's only goal in a 1-0 victory for the 'Cats.

Skelly scored on an individual run starting about 35 yards out on her way to the penalty area. She shot from 16 yards across the goal to the left post, sending the ball past diving OIT goalkeeper Jaclyn Unruh.

It was the game's only goal, although WU outshot the Owls 13-4 overall and 5-1 in shots on goal. Kelli Gano (So., GK, Portland, OR/Cleveland HS) earned one save while recording the shutout. It was her seventh career solo shutout, after recording seven clean sheets in 2007.

The Bearcats had several quality chances to score additional goals. Haley Rosenthal (Jr., MF, Cheyenne, WY/Cheyenne East HS) hit the left upright on an acute-angle shot at 49:11. Alex Batzer (So., MF, Medford, OR/North Medford HS) also hit the post with a shot at 59:44.

Both of the frame-hitting shots were taken with the score still tied 0-0. Willamette earned additional opportunities after Skelly scored, including three shots in less than a minute between 79:40 and 80:24. WU claimed a 9-2 edge in shots during the second half.

Oregon Tech had four players with one shot apiece, including Amy Furlan, who took OIT's only shot on goal, which Gano saved at 15:22. Unruh concluded the game with four saves -- all in the first half -- for Oregon Tech.

Willamette finished with a 4-2 advantage in corner kicks. The Bearcats were called for 17 fouls, while OIT was whistled for 13 fouls.

Willamette University 1, Oregon Institute of Technology 0
Stephanie Skelly scored a goal in her first collegiate game for the Bearcats.

Stephanie Skelly scored a goal in her first collegiate game for the Bearcats.