@IUWSoccer Keeps The Golden Boot Following 2-1 Win at Purdue
Oct. 24, 2013
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - The Indiana women's soccer team (12-4-1, 5-4 Big Ten) scored a pair of second half goals to pick up the 2-1 win over Purdue (8-8-1, 3-6 Big Ten) at the Boiler Soccer Complex. It is the first-ever win in West Lafayette for the Hoosiers, as they retained possession of the Golden Boot travelling trophy.
Senior Shannon Flower tied her career high with 10 saves in the game for the Hoosiers and almost single-handedly kept IU in the game in the first half. Another senior, Rebecca Candler, took her turn in the second half, scoring the tying goal and then assisting on the game-winner in the 81st minute.
"Purdue was fantastic and really won the first half by putting us under pressure that we were not able to figure out in the first half. Thankfully we were able to break their pressure in the second half by combining passes to create chances and we were able to execute the chances we did get to come away with the win."
It was Purdue that came out of the gates firing, forcing IU keeper Shannon Flower to make a save less than 30 seconds in the contest. That would be a theme during the first half, but the senior goalkeeper was up to the task by making eight first half saves, many of them on dangerous shots that forced her to dive to make the save. Purdue was able to score one goal in the half to put the Hoosiers in a 1-0 hole going to intermission.
But Indiana regrouped in the locker room and came out focused on the gameplan. They started to put pressure on the Purdue defense but struggled to put together the right combinations to get in on goal. Eventually, in the 69th minute, they broke through when Abby Smith took a pass just outside the box and put Rebecca Candler in on goal, and she drilled it past the Purdue keeper to tie the game at 1-1. For Candler, it was her fourth goal of the season and it was Smith's fifth assist of the year.
Indiana did not stop there, as they continued to gain more and more confidence as the game progressed on towards the end of regulation. With less than 10 minutes remaining, it was Candler that would be in the middle of the action.
Purdue was whistled for a foul 40 yards in front of their own goal. Instead of running a set piece from that spot, Abby Smith sent an attacking pass ahead to Candler wide open inside the box while the Purdue defense had their back to her. She dribbled in on goal and sent a cross in front of the frame and the ball deflected off Monica Melink and into the goal to put the Hoosiers ahead, 2-1.
The goal was the third of the season for Melink, and her second game-winner, while Candler logged her eighth assist of the year and the 19th of her career.
"Shannon kept it together on the defensive end and tried to stay as positive as she could in the first half when things weren't going our way," Indiana head coach Amy Berbary said. "And then Candler came up huge for us. She had a great finish to get us started and then had a very alert play on the free kick with Abby and she was then a great run by Monica (Melink) capped it off."
The 12 victories are the most by the Hoosiers since 2007 when they won 13 games and advanced to the Sweet 16 of the NCAA Tournament. The five Big Ten wins are also the most since 2007.
With two more assists tonight, IU has 36 on the year to set a new school record for assists in a season, surpassing the 35 assists in 1998.
Flower picked up her 21st win in goal, tying Ashley Davis (1996-99) for fourth place on the career wins list by a goalkeeper at Indiana.
IU will return to Bloomington for the final regular season home game of the season on Sunday when they play host to Wisconsin at 1:30 p.m. ET. Senior Day festivities will take place before the game around 1:00 p.m., as we recognize eight players for their contributions to the program the last four years.
Check back soon