Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Georgetown Outscores Local Rival Howard

Charles Nailen/The Hoya Georgetown scored nine times en route to a decisive 9-5 victory over Howard.

It is difficult to be disappointed when you score nine goals. The Hoyas, however, could have done better.

“We had the opportunity to score 20 goals,” Women’s Soccer Head Coach Diane Drake said. “Our commitment to defense as the game progressed was also lacking.” Although Georgetown (1-1) defeated Howard (0-2) by a respectable margin on Wednesday, much of the polish needed to win games against stronger opponents was absent. In the 9-5 victory the Hoyas outshot the Bison 40-9. The remarkable shot differential is indicative of a more dominant result.

Georgetown’s failure to pursue both offensively and defensively led to missed opportunities and poor coverage near the goal.

“Our players closest to the ball ran out of steam,” Drake said.

The Hoyas appeared to lack focus throughout the entire game. Georgetown seemed not to give the Bison due respect. Although Howard is not on the same eschelon as the Big East schools Georgetown must beat this season, the Hoyas could have retained more focus.

“We want to reach the NCAA tournament this season” Drake said. “Another one of our goals is no `should have’s.’ `Should have’s’ happened here in this game.”

There were no “should have’s” right after the national anthem. The Hoyas came out of the gates strong, scoring the game’s first four goals in 20 minutes. The Hoyas dominated the field rarely allowing Howard past the half line.

“Our aim was to punish them early and then experiment with different substitutions,” Drake said.

As Georgetown brought out some of its younger players to earn them collegiate experience, the team’s focus slowed. Drake, however, felt that this lack of focus had little to do with individual play. It was more a product of the cohesiveness of the lineup and psychological factors.

“I was a little disheartened by our response after we took the early lead. We followed the natural instinct, which is to fall back,” Drake said.

As Georgetown relaxed late in the first half, Howard crept back with two goals to Georgetown’s one. At the half Georgetown led, almost too comfortably, 5-2.

Just before the beginning of the second half the PA system asked for a warm welcome for freshman keeper Louisa Butler. Butler suffered a broken fibula and tibia in her leg challenging a shot at the season opener against William and Mary.

Junior keeper Alexis George will replace Butler this season. . A highly touted recruit, Butler will redshirt this year and return to the net next season.

“We miss Louisa. But I’m glad we have Alexis,” junior forward Courtney Shaub said.

As the second half began the Hoyas brought out the same intensity they used to establish the early lead. Hoya fans saw a lot of shots on goal from the tandem of Shaub and sophomore forward Casey McCann. Georgetown scored three straight goals after a quick goal by Howard to lead 8-3.

The five-goal lead was a commanding advantage Howard never really challenged. The Hoyas, however, did not finish near the goal on many occasions.

“Casey and I work well together up front,” Shaub said. “We should have scored more I guess.” Almost before she finishes her thought she catches herself. “No `should have’s.'”

Perhaps the biggest “should have” in the game was the hat trick the Hoyas allowed sophomore forward Ranieka Bean to post. Bean’s devastating speed and skill around the goal earned her 19 goals last year and three on Wednesday.

“Bean is a dangerous, versatile player,” Drake said. She is such a dominant player that Howard seemed to design their offense around her one-on-one skills.

“They put one player on the flank, knock it long and get goals. They’ll score a lot this year,” Drake said.

This quick strike style is uncommon in the college game and the Hoyas had their difficulties defending against the unorthodox style. George was welcomed back to the keeper position with a number of one-on-one challenges from Bean and her teammates.

“We hung Alexis out to dry a lot back there,” Drake said.

Howard’s breakaways led to a significantly higher shot percentage than Georgetown deserved. The Hoyas, however, earned the win, which makes statistics like shot percentage rather meaningless.

In the process Georgetown sent the entire roster to the field and freshman Lindsay Berz and sophomore Christine Bell scored their first goals as Hoyas.

Nicole Depalma also had an excellent game. Depalma tallied a remarkable five assists, more than double her previous career total.

Along with strong passing from the midfield, the Hoyas also got excellent play in goal. George made a number of important stops on difficult breakaways against quick, strong players like Bean.

The Hoyas next face a real test at the Dayton tournament against Dayton tonight at 8:30 p.m.

“It’s going to be a packed house,” Drake said. “Big game under the lights against a strong team. We always step up against tougher competition. We’ll be ready.”

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