Seattle University women's soccer capped off the opening weekend of the 2012 regular season with a big win over St. Mary's, topping the Gaels, 5-1, Sunday at Championship Field.
"I was exceptionally pleased," said Seattle U head coach Julie Woodward. "I think Friday's game was great for us because it prepared us for the season. Anytime you open with a great opponent [...and] a very well-coached team, it can only benefit you. Unfortunately, we didn't get the result [we wanted] on Friday, but I'm extremely happy with the way the team responded today."
"Obviously scoring a hat trick feels good, but [today] was a whole team effort," said Busque. "If I can score goals, that's good, but if I can help people score, it'd be great to do that too."
Busque opened the game scoring the first two goals for Seattle U, the first in the 19th minute and the second in the 36th minute. Monique Escalera (Riverside, Calif.) assisted on the first goal and Liana Heberer (Oceanside, Calif.) made the assist on the second.
Off the bench, Heather Thomas (Woodinville, Wash.), assisted by Alyssa Campagna (Las Vegas, Nev.) and Taylor Ritzman (Holladay, Utah), assisted by Thomas, added goals to the Redhawks' total, each scoring within three minutes after entering the game. For Thomas, her goal came just one minute and five seconds after coming onto the field.
The Redhawks went into halftime leading 4-0 but the Gaels got on the board in the 61st minute with a goal by Katy Roby, assisted by Vicki Shimkus, to bring the score to 4-1.
The celebration for the Gaels (1-1-0) was short-lived, as Busque added her third and final goal of the game for the Redhawks, less than a minute later, off a corner kick in the 62nd minute.
As Seattle U excelled offensively, their defense was equally on-point, shooting 28 shots, and allowing only eight from St. Mary's. The Gaels' first shot did not come until Jaime Turrentine took a shot in the 58th minute, shortly before the team's only goal of the match.
Freshman Brianna Smallidge (Port Orchard, Wash.) got her second career start in goal, again playing all 90 minutes for the Redhawks. She recorded two saves, allowing only one goal. Kate Brenot and Stephanie Busch split time at goalkeeper for the Gaels, with Brenot playing nearly 69 minutes, but giving up all five goals.
When asked how important it was for both starters and bench players to score today, Woodward said “I think that’s going to be the difference in our team this year, because we are a very deep team, and I think everyone is fighting for spots and for minutes. I think that competitiveness, and the players coming off the bench performing so well just makes us a stronger, deeper, better team, so I’m really thrilled about that.”
The Redhawks (1-1-0) make their first regular season road trip of 2012 to play San Diego State on Friday, Aug. 24, at 7 p.m. The team then returns home to host Eastern Washington on Sunday, Aug. 26, at 1 p.m. at Championship Field.
To catch all the action this season, visit www.GoSeattleU.com or call the Redhawk ticket office at (206) 398-GOSU (4678) to purchase season tickets. Men's and women's soccer season tickets are $75 apiece for reserved seats and $50 for general admission. Single game tickets are available at the gate 60 minutes prior to kickoff before each match.