The Goshen College women’s soccer team picked up two key wins over the past week in route to the first 2-0 start in conference play since 1997.Last Saturday, the Maple Leafs went to Huntington University and defeated the Foresters 3-2, followed by a 2-1 victory over the Bethel College Pilots on Tuesday evening.
On Saturday, Huntington opened up the scoring in the 10th minute for the 1-0 lead. That score line held until the halftime break, the Foresters leading 1-0. The first half saw three of the Maple Leaf’s nine shots and also two of their seven corner kicks.
The Foresters would double their lead in the 64th minute, the Maple Leafs stuck down 2-0. Eleven minutes later Goshen (6-4-1, 2-0) had its response when Ginyce Haywood, a senior, found the back of the net, assisted by Xenia Isaula, a first-year. Then in the 76th minute, Haywood struck again, this time unassisted, for her second goal in as many minutes, the game now tied at 2 apiece.
With the momentum on their side, Goshen didn’t hesitate, capitalizing a third time within three minutes to take the lead by what would ultimately be the final score of 3-2. Goalkeeper Natalie Thorne, a senior, tallied eight saves in the Maple Leaf win.
Tuesday’s trip to Mishawaka to take on Bethel College was no less of a thriller, the Maple Leafs triumphing 2-1 over the Pilots.
Haywood scored the game’s first goal in the 26th minute to give Goshen the 1-0 lead only to see Bethel respond with a goal of their own in the 31st minute to tie the game at 1-1, a score that lasted to half. The Maple Leafs recorded seven of a game-high 13 shots in the first 45 minutes.
Both teams had chances to retake the lead in the second half, and Goshen surged ahead in the 70th minute when Melanie Drinkwater, a senior, gave the Leafs a 2-1 lead. Thorne made three saves in goal in the win.
The victory keeps Goshen tied for first in the conference with Spring Arbor University and Taylor University.
Goshen returns to action on Saturday in the first game of a home doubleheader alongside the men. The women take on the University of Saint Francis at 5 p.m. followed by the men hosting Huntington University.