Women's Soccer Blanks Villanova, 3-0

Box Score (PDF)

PHILADELPHIA - The Penn women's soccer team had never beaten Villanova in 12 previous tries heading into Sunday night's game at Rhodes Field. That streak went by the boards in grand fashion, as the Quakers scored three times in the first half and were never seriously threatened after that in taking a 3-0 win.

Penn had gone 0-11-1 against Villanova prior to Sunday. Most recently, in 2008, the Quakers had built up a 2-0 lead midway through the second half but saw the 'Cats claw back and escape with a 3-2 victory. There were no such miracles for Villanova fans this time around, however.

After playing attractive soccer without getting a positive result Friday against Towson, Penn played well again on Sunday night. This time, the results came early. In just the 22nd minute, freshman Brianna Rano sent a cross in from the right side and classmate Kathryn Barth headed it on goal. Villanova goalkeeper Jami Kranich overcommitted, and the ball squirted just under her left arm into the goal. It was Barth's first collegiate goal, in just her second collegiate match.

In the 37th minute, freshman Christina Hart was fouled just inside of midfield. Senior Kaitlin Campbell took the long free kick, and -- you guessed it -- Hart was at the other end, powering through the ball with a header that beat Kranich for her first collegiate goal.

The knockout punch came just before halftime, when a long shot was deflected and went right to sophomore Erin Beck. She slotted a shot past Kranich for her first collegiate goal to put Penn up 3-0 at the break.

The second half picked up in action -- after combining for eight shots in the first half, both Penn and Villanova took seven in the second. However, Caroline Williams was never severely tested in making four saves to gain the shutout victory.

Penn is back at home twice next weekend, hosting the Penn Classic on Rhodes Field. Friday's action features Dayton and Lehigh at 3 p.m. followed by Penn and Saint Joseph's at 6 p.m. On Sunday, Penn plays Dayton at noon and then Saint Joseph's faces Lehigh at 2:30.

Download: Penn02 (Villanova).pdf