Butler scored off of a restart as well as on a penalty kick Sunday afternoon as the Bulldogs spoiled Valparaiso’s Horizon League opener 2-0 at Eastgate Field.
The Crusaders played the Bulldogs even throughout the run of play, and finished the match with equal shot totals of 10 each, but the visitors found the back of the net 20 minutes in to go in front 1-0.
Abbie Kaul placed a free kick from 30 yards out into the lower left corner of the goal for her first tally of the season.
Valpo had several chances in the first half, but Annalise Larkin made three saves to keep the Crusaders off of the scoreboard.
“At halftime I was very comfortable with how we played in the first half even with giving up the one goal on the restart,” head coach Stephen Anthony said. “I was confident with a strong effort in the second half that we would have our chances to pull even.”
A Crusader foul late in the match, however, led to a Butler penalty kick and Angie Muir scored her team-leading fifth goal with just 2:56 left for the insurance tally and Valpo was not able to find the back of the net.
“Unfortunately our play in the second half was not that clean, especially in the attacking third and we could not get a hold of the game,” Anthony added. “We never really caused Butler to be uncomfortable in the match.”
Erin Murray (Pleasanton, Calif./Amador Valley H.S.) had two saves for the Crusaders in goal while Kaul finished with six for Butler (3-6-1, 1-1 Horizon).
Valparaiso (6-5, 0-1) will return to action on Tuesday evening in Chicago as the Crusaders battle Loyola. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m.