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The Scarlet & Black

The Scarlet & Black

Women’s soccer looks to build off strong conference start

Cory Hall
Grinnell women’s soccer celebrates after scoring against Illinois College. Contributed by Ted Schultz

Grinnell women’s soccer scored a huge 8-0 victory against Illinois College at the conference-opener on Sept. 25. The goal total is the highest since Grinnell faced Rockford University in 2014.

“We took a little while to get settled in, but once we did, we were able to get some goals up,” said Alyssa Radakovich `22, center forward. Grinnell scored two goals in the first half and six in the second half, tied for the sixth-most goals in a half in Grinnell’s women’s soccer history. In total, Grinnell recorded 21 shots on goal.

Radakovich credited the win to Grinnell being a very high-possession team. The team’s successful plays came from continuously passing down the field through the outside-midfielder and outside-forward, with a shot on the side at the end. More than half their goals against Illinois College were scored this way.

This victory comes after Grinnell went 1-6 in their pre-conference season.

“We had a rough start to the season,” said Radakovich. “We purposefully play very tough schools to prepare us for conference. … We want to find out where our flaws are.”

Radakovich also said most of Grinnell’s team is new. Half of the team has never played collegiate soccer before this season because of graduating seniors, new recruits and a lack of the 2020 season due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We’re still settling in and trying to find out our identity. But every game we get better; we make progress,” said Radakovich, adding that many goals against Illinois College were by first-time scorers. Francesca Dalla Betta `22, Allison Wehrman `24, Tali Berk `24 and Tori Thomas `25 all scored career-firsts.

On Sept. 28, Grinnell lost 0-2 to Knox College, bringing Grinnell’s conference total to 1-1. Radakovich attributed some of this loss to the difficulty of being such a new team.

“We’re still trying to figure out how to come into a game ready, and how to get rid of our mental lapses,” said Radakovich. “But I think that we put up a really good match against [Knox].”

At Knox, Grinnell had four shots on goal. Keepers Hannah Malicky `22 and Elinor Arneson `23 fended off nine shots from Knox.

The top four out of nine teams in the Midwest Conference attend the conference championships. The team who wins the conference championships will attend NCAA Division III nationals.

Grinnell faces Wartburg College, not in-conference, on Sunday, Oct. 3, at 3:00 p.m. on Springer Field.

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Nina Baker
Nina Baker, Staff Writer
Nina Baker is a fourth-year Russian major with a Russian, Central European and Eurasian Studies concentration from Lakeville, Minnesota. When she's not reporting for The Scarlet & Black, she loves taking long walks, reading, and learning foreign languages.
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