By Robert McKinney, Assistant Athletics Director, Communications
SALEM, Ore. -- Jackie Gilroy (Fy., F/M, Mercer Island, WA/Mercer Island HS) broke a tie score with a goal at 75:12 to give Willamette University the lead the send the Bearcats to a 2-1 victory over Northwest Conference rival Whitworth University in a women's soccer game at Sparks Field on Saturday, Nov. 9. Willamette advanced its record to 10-7-2 overall, 9-4-2 in the NWC. Whitworth fell to 6-12-1 on the season, 5-9-1 in the NWC.
Early in the game, Whitworth controlled the tempo and kept much of the possession. The Pirates turned their advantage into a 1-0 lead when Jadyn Baumgartner scored a goal at 25:46. Baumgartner shot from 26 yards out, and sent the ball high into the net over the outstretched arms of WU goalkeeper Kristen Barclay (Sr., GK, Kenmore, WA/Cedar Park Christian School).
The Bearcats soon started to gain their more possession and eventually rallied for the win.
Gena Main (Sr., F, San Francisco, CA/Gateway HS/Bryn Mawr College) tied the score at 1-1 with a goal at 40:20. Main's shot was a header from 6 yards into the lower left corner of the goal following a cross from 28 yards out by Isabel Duxbury (Jr., D, Seattle, WA/University Prep). The teams remained tied at halftime and for much of the second half.
The game-winning play began with a shot from 23 yards by Shanna Keil (Sr., F, Danville, CA/San Ramon Valley HS) that was saved by goalie Kaycie Priske of Whitowrth. Priske was unable to hold onto the shot and the ball dropped nearby, where Gilroy kicked it into the net.
After Gilroy's goal with just under 15 minutes remaining in the second half, the Bearcats kept plenty of pressure on the Pirates at both ends of the field to keep the lead intact. Even so, Whitworth managed one shot, an effort by Emma Foulk 10 yards out near the left edge of the penalty area that forced Barclay to make a diving save at 81:04. Shorlty brefore Fouk's shot for the Pirates, Keil took shots for Willamette that went wide at 80:21. She also achieved a shot at 87:35 that also went wide. Both of the shots by Keil barely missed the net.
Willamette outshot Whitworth 16-7 overall and 7-2 in shots on target. Keil led all players with four total shots. Barclay was credited with one save for the Bearcats. Piske recorded one save for the Pirates in the second half after taking over for Isabell Arends, who made four saves in the first half.
The Bearcats will close out the season against Whitman College on Sunday, Nov. 10 during Senior Day at Sparks Field. Kickoff is set for 12 p.m. (PST). The Bearcats will honor the team's eight seniors prior to the game.