Valparaiso’s seven-match winning streak and season came to an
end on Sunday afternoon as the Crusaders dropped a 4-0 decision to Milwaukee in the
championship match of the 2009 Horizon League Women’s Soccer Championship.
The Crusaders, the
tournament’s third seed, was appearing in their first tournament championship
match since joining the conference in 2007.
With the win, Milwaukee,
the regular season champion and top seed, earns the league’s automatic bid to
the NCAA Tournament.
“This is tough for our kids,”
head coach John Marovich said. “They really battled out there there today
and fought throughout. They overcame a
lot this year to have the finish to the season they had.”
Sarah Hagen scored three
times in the first half and had four in the match to add to her Horizon
League-leading goal total, giving her 24 on the year. She put the Panthers on the board just 8:53
into the match. Nicole Sperl sent the
ball in from the right side and Hagen
headed it into the back of the net.
“Hagen is able to finish and had two headers
today,” Marovich said. “She’s just a
really good goal scorer.”
She then added her second
tally just 3:46 later as Louise Vraney tipped the ball past Mele Cabral (Boulder, Colo./Fairview
H.S.) and Hagen pushed the ball into the back of the net. With 21:54 to play before halftime, Laurel
Ragalie chipped the ball past the Valpo defense and Hagen finished it for her third goal of the half.
(Lakeville, Minn./Academy of Holy Angels H.S.) had Valpo’s first chance
of the match 28 minutes in, firing a shot from 30 yards out that was saved by
Milwaukee (12-5-3) outshot Valpo 8-2 in the opening half, but
both of the Crusaders’ shots were on goal, forcing Forbes to make the stops.
Hagen added her fourth goal of the match with 22:40
remaining, scoring on a header off a cross from Makenzie Gillaspie from the
right side and Valpo was unable to find the back of the net to break up the
The Panthers outshot the
Crusaders 14-3 for the match, including a 5-2 edge on goal. Milwaukee
also had the only three corner kicks while holding Valpo without one for the
“We wanted to try and change
the game and try to take away something they like to do,” Marovich added. “We tried to limit their shots and we did
that holding them to just 14 total.”
(Buffalo Grove, Ill./Buffalo
Grove H.S.) and Brooke Henderson (Westlake, Ohio/Westlake
H.S.) were both named to the All-Tournament Team following the championship.
Valparaiso finished the season with an 11-9-1 record, posting
the third most victories in a single season in school history.
Match Notes: Milwaukee
has won all 11 meetings all-time with Valpo … White appeared in her 78th career match, fifth all-time in
school history, starting her 73rd career contest, 10th
most at Valpo … Valpo’s seven-match win streak was the second longest in school