Mele Cabral (Boulder, Colo./Fairview H.S.) set Valparaiso’s single season shutout record on Sunday afternoon with her seventh clean sheet of 2008 as the Crusaders defeated Southern Illinois-Edwardsville 2-0 at Eastgate Field.
Cabral, who has nine for her career, passed Erin Murray, who had six shutouts in both 2004 and 2007. She needed to make three saves in the match as the Cougars had nine total shot attempts.
Jackie Thomas (Overland Park, Kan./Blue Valley Northwest H.S.) started the scoring for Valpo at the 28:15 mark of the first half. Following a Dana McGlone (Littleton, Colo./Heritage H.S.) corner kick, Laura Murphy (Aurora, Ill./Waubonsie Valley H.S.) centered the ball into the box where Thomas headed it home from about five yards out.
Sarah Jewell (Kansas City, Mo./Park Hill H.S.) added the insurance goal just over five minutes later. After a long ball into the box eluded her initially, she took advantage of a turnover by SIU-Edwardsville and scored from 15 yards out.
“It was nice to get two goals in the first half for the first time this season,” head coach John Marovich said. “The goals we created came off of second chances. We took advantage of the chances we had today.”
Valpo outshot the Cougars 12-9 for the match, including a 7-4 edge in the final 45 minutes. Kacie Backs made two saves between the posts in the first half for SIU-Edwardsville (5-6) while Claire Lovercheck made two stops in the second stanza.
“Our defense was solid today,” added Marovich. “The backs played simple and it was nice that they were able to sustain their shape for 90 minutes.”
Valparaiso (9-4-1) has now wrapped up non-conference play for the 2008 season and will return to Horizon League action on Friday afternoon against Loyola (Chicago). Kickoff is set for 4 p.m. at Eastgate Field with all the action carried live on WVUR (95.1-FM, Valparaiso) and online at www.valpoathletics.com.
Match Notes: Marovich earned his ninth victory as Crusader head coach, moving into second place alone on Valpo’s career wins list … this was the first meeting ever between Valpo and SIU-Edwardsville … Valpo is now 6-1 at Eastgate Field this season and finished non-conference play with an 8-1-1 record … Sunday was the kickoff of Breast Cancer Awareness Week at Valpo and the Crusaders wore pink jerseys that were sponsored for loved ones affected by the disease with the proceeds going to the Susan G. Koman for the Cure foundation … Cabral’s nine shutouts are second all-time at Valpo for a career … Thomas’ match-winning goal was the seventh of her career, moving her into a tie for second all-time at Valpo … the goal was also the 11th of Thomas’ career, placing her in a tie for seventh all-time … Murphy’s assist moves her into ninth alone on the Crusaders’ career assist list … the match was played in unseasonably warm weather with temperatures reaching the low to mid 80s.