Season finishes with 3-1 victory

Laurier will host the highest remaining seed in the OUA West quarterfinal Sunday. (Photo by Kha Vo)

Laurier will host the highest remaining seed in the OUA West quarterfinal Sunday. (Photo by Kha Vo)

The Wilfrid Laurier women’s soccer team kicked off their final game of the regular season when they hosted the McMaster Marauders at University Stadium on Sunday afternoon.

The game began with many turns in possession, but the superior passing skills of Laurier prevailed. Amanda Mithrush delivered a striking pass up middle field and off a deflection, striker Emily Brown made no mistake in the 16th minute to get Laurier on the board first.

The Hawks continued their strong play and dominated the first half, tallying a second goal when Jessica Craig raced up left field after a pass from Brown to kick it past the Marauders goalkeeper coming into the end of the first half.

“I wanted to try my best to maybe try and score again, it gave me motivation to go harder, I wanted to get the ball a lot more,” Craig said when asked about what was going through her mind after she scored that goal.

She gained a kind of spark that carried her through the rest of the game, motivating her to give her all coming into the second half.

The Hawks succeeded in carrying their momentum when Craig managed a cross pass to Brown who touched twine in the 52nd minute for her second goal of the game to take a 3-0 lead.

Brown’s two goals in the game gives her 18 goals in 16 games during the regular season. She captured the Ontario University Athletics (OUA) scoring title.

The Marauders scored their lone goal at the end of the game to make it 3-1, but that was not enough as Laurier improved their overall record to 9-3-4 to round out the season.

“I thought we connected passes well, we created enough chances, our finishing was exceptional, the three goals were all excellent goals,” head coach Barry MacLean said following the match.

The Hawks were able to set up all three goals with strong passing ability throughout the game to maintain their lead.

When talking about performance, Craig took pride in the teamwork demonstrated throughout the game by her comrades.

“I think we really played as a team, sometimes we get a little lost, we panic a lot, often in games, and that’s what Barry [MacLean] has told us too. We need to relax, and calm down. Move the ball around,” she said.

When they are able to gain control, they maintain their focus, which is a huge factor when it comes to pursuing success.

Despite having a busy schedule trying to balance school with sports, MacLean believes that “the girls have got a goal that they want to achieve and that helps with [focus].”

“As long as everyone shows up, everyone gives it their 100 per cent then I think we should do really good. We’ve been doing really good so far, so I think we’ll succeed,” Craig agreed.

Laurier finishes the OUA regular season in second place in the West division and will start their playoff run on Sunday at 1 p.m. at home, in which their opponent is still to be determined.

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