Blue Jays Battle Into Double OT But Fall In Opener

Photo By Caleb Maassen
Photo By Caleb Maassen

Decatur, IL, 9/4/21 – The Westminster College women's soccer team opened up their season on the road on Saturday as they took on the Millikin University Big Blue from the powerful CCIW conference.  The Blue Jays under the direction of first year head coach Courtney Howe would stand toe to toe with the Big Blue into double overtime, but Millikin would strike for the game winner in the 103rd minute to win 1-0.

The Blue Jays had chances throughout the game.  Five minutes into the game Blue Jay sophomore midfielder Lauren Halamicek (St. Louis, MO / Oakville High School) ripped a shot on goal that was saved by Millikin keeper Hope Limoges.  On the other side of the field Westminster sophomore keeper Megan Davidson (St. Louis, MO / Affton High School) was on from the start as she faced 4 shots on goal by the Big Blue in the first half and made all four saves to keep the game scoreless at half.

The Blue Jays put some pressure on the Big Blue late in the second half.  In the 82nd minute and the score still 0-0, sophomore midfielder Annalise Beck (St. Louis, MO / Notre Dame High School) would rip a shot towards the top right corner of the Millikin goal but Limoges would leap to make the save.  Beck would nearly score again this time in the 84th minute after a Millikin foul would give the Jays a free kick just outside of the box.  Becks shot was again turned away by the Millikin keeper and the game would head into overtime scoreless.

In the first overtime disaster almost struck in the 93rd minute when a Millikin attacker found the ball on her foot on the right side of the goal about 10 yards out she ripped a shot high but Davidson made an outstanding leaping save to keep the Blue Jays in the game and eventually sent the game into double overtime 0-0.

In double overtime in the 103rd minute Millikin attacker Bailey Blecker took a pass up the right sideline and worked her way around the Westminster defense and beat Davidson near post for the game winning goal.

The Big Blue outshot the Blue Jays 15-6 overall and 7-4 in shots on goal.  Each team took two corner kicks in the game.  Westminster was whistled for eight fouls to Millikin's seven.

Coach Howe had this to say about her squads' game, "I couldn't be prouder of our team and the battle they fought tonight. For 103 minutes we were the better team and our opponent knew it. Millikin just capitalized on an opportunity."  She added, "It wasn't the result we wanted but that's part of the game. On to the next."

The Blue Jays will return to action next Saturday when they open up the home portion of their schedule when they host anther CCIW foe in Elmhurst College.  The game is scheduled for a 12:00 p.m. kick off at Kent and Judith Mueller Stadium.