Bulldogs slosh past Central for 4th straight shutout

Thursday, April 17, 2003

Notre Dame's girls soccer team picked up a waterlogged 1-0 victory over Central Wednesday night at Shawnee Soccer Park.

Playing in a steady wind-blown rain throughout, which was interrupted only by occasional torrential downpours, Brittney Little scored the game's lone goal six minutes into the second half.

It led to Notre Dame's second 1-0 victory over Central this season and extended its unbeaten string to eight games. Notre Dame improved to 9-1-1, while Central is 6-7.

"The rain was horrible, but we still played as a team," said Little, a junior midfielder. "It was hard to see and it was very cold, but we had good ball control most of the game."

Vision was good enough for Little to locate a crossing pass from Kristen Boos, who was on the left wing. Lauren Mehner served as a decoy in between the two players as she let the pass go through to Little, who one-timed a shot over Central goalkeeper Megan Kistner from about 10 yards out.

It was one of several good scoring opportunities in the game for Notre Dame. Kistner kept the game scoreless when she stymied Sierra Ellis on a breakaway with two minutes left in the first half. Ellis broke free from midfield after the ball bounced past two Central defenders, but Kistner came out and slid to her left to block the shot and then blocked another attempt as Ellis tried to deposit the rebound.

Kistner also had the more difficult save chances in the second half.

"I thought our ball movement was much better in the second half, and we were able to generate the goal off that," Notre Dame coach Jeff Worley said.

It was the fourth straight shutout for Notre Dame, three of which came by 1-0 scores.

"Things are going well," Worley said. "None of them are easy, but we're doing what we need to do. We're getting just enough in the net, and the defense has been really solid."

Central was on the other end of another one-goal game. Four of its seven losses have been by 1-0 scores.

"It's been kind of our history this year," Central coach Tom Doyle said. "We let down one time. The girl came all the way out of the back, made a long run and nobody picked her up. She was wide open and put it into the back of the net. We have to learn both teams have 11 players, and if somebody goes, we've got to go with them. We haven't been doing that."

Central had one of its better scoring chances against Notre Dame goalie Katie Palmer late in the second half, but Stephanie White fired wide on the final opportunity.

"They're playing better and better," Notre Dame coach Jeff Worley said. "They put a lot of pressure on us the last 15-20 minutes, and we held together."

jbreer@semissourian.com

335-6611, extension 124

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