|Mt.Vernon Naz. Univ. (8-3-1, 2-1-1 CL)||2||0||2|
|U.of Saint FrancisW (7-6-0, 1-3 CL)||0||1||1|
|Ft. Wayne, IN @ USF|
|1||14:45||Rachel Graver (Mt.Vernon Naz. Univ.)|
|1||16:23||Rachel Graver (Mt.Vernon Naz. Univ.)|
|2||69:28||Brey Baltazar (U.of Saint FrancisW)|
|Mt.Vernon Naz. Univ.||Indv. Leaders||U.of Saint FrancisW|
|#12 Rachel Graver - 2||Goals||#8 Brey Baltazar - 1|
|3 Players - 3||Shots||#8 Brey Baltazar - 1|
|None||Saves||#00 Monica Stieber - 6|
|Mt.Vernon Naz. Univ.||Team Statistics||U.of Saint FrancisW|
|10 (8)||Shots (on goal)||1 (1)|
FORT WAYNE, Ind. – Junior midfielder Rachel Graver scored two first half goals for Mount Vernon Nazarene University women's soccer on the road at Saint Francis, and the receiving votes Cougars went on for the 2-1 Crossroads League victory.
Graver booted home the opening score for MVNU at the 14:45 mark. A pass up the field from midfielder Morgan Gibson sent Graver, Amberly Knox, and Saint Francis goalkeeper Monica Steiber into a footrace, and after a challenge, Steiber lost her footing and left the goal open for Graver, who confidently placed it high and past the retreating defenders into the back of the net.
Graver would add her second score of the game and fourth of the season just a few moments later, finding some open space from about 18 yards out after a pass from Knox. Graver's shot took a deflection off the lower leg of a Saint Francis defender, taking a loopy and bending trajectory perfectly into the far post corner past Steiber.
The home side would make it 2-1 with a little over 20 minutes to play in the second half, breaking out in a counterattack down the left side of the field.
A give-and-go led to an undefended attempt on net, and Brey Baltazar calmly carved a low shot to the far post past MVNU keeper with the outside of her right foot.
MVNU's strong defense however would hold up over the final 20 minutes of play, keeping Saint Francis from creating and converting chances. In the game, the visiting Cougars finished with ten shots with eight on goal, while Baltazar's score was the only shot of the match for Saint Francis.
MVNU (8-3-1, 2-1-1 CL) picked up the win a day after receiving votes in the latest NAIA Top-25 Coaches Poll, representing one of five Crossroads League teams present in the poll.
"Our team really came out and dictated the pace of this game right from the start," said Head Coach Daniel Seiffert. "I was really happy to see the focus and determination that we demonstrated for the entire 90 minutes. We have a short turnaround now in order to get ready for another competitive league match. We will look to honor our seniors at Saturday's game for the legacy that they have established as a part of this team."
Seiffert and the Cougars will next take the field on Saturday, Oct. 14 on Cougar Field against Huntington (6-6-1, 2-2-0 CL), in what will be Senior Day for the team's six seniors. The ceremony will take place at half time, and kick-off is set for 3 p.m.