CLINTON -- On a hot and muggy night at South Campus, the Ashford University women’s soccer team faced off against the Trojans of Trinity International University.
Despite a first half in which Trinity International controlled the play, the No. 20-ranked Saints were able to battle back and get a pair of late goals to down the Trojans, 3-1.
Senior Sarah Schreck had three points for the Saints, who also got goals from Jordan Pisesky and Hollie Babut as Ashford improved to 5-2 on the year. Freshman Hannah Scheid added an assist for the Saints to record her ninth point of the year, tying her with Schreck for the team lead.
But it was the team’s defense that weathered a first half storm and shut down the Trojans in the second half to help propel the team to victory.
“We were all over the place in the first half defensively,” Ashford coach Mick Regan said. “We told our girls at the half to just play together and to their credit, they did just that. The defense calmed everyone down in the second half with how well they were playing. They kept everything simple and that gave us the confidence boost we needed to get the win.”
Calgary native Pisesky opened the scoring for the Saints, taking a feed from Scheid down the left side and beating Trojan keeper Liz Burzynski inside the near post for her third goal of the year.
Trinity responded less than four minutes later, when Samantha Yasatan beat Ashford’s Jessica VanDyke to even up the score.
For the remainder of the half, VanDyke was razor sharp, making four of her five saves in the opening frame. It was the kind of boost the Saints needed as the Trojans’ attack continued to pressure the Ashford defense.
“Jess is a great goalkeeper,” Regan said. “She was able to mop up some mistakes and keep us in the game. She was very vocal and she needed to be playing behind a young back line. It was a great display of leadership and we fed off that after the break.”
The Saints peppered Burzynski after the intermission, but the game remained tied until the 79th minute. That was when Babut blasted a shot over Burzysnki’s head from 30 yards out to put the Saints on top.
Schreck added an insurance marker in the 82nd minute. The Des Moines native launched a corner kick that snuck just past the outstretched arms of Burzynski and inside the far post for her team-leading fourth goal of the year.
Burzynski finished with five saves for the Trojans, who fell to 4-2 on the year.
Ashford held a 15-12 advantage in shots for the match. The Saints took six corner kicks to two for the Trojans.
The Saints will conclude their current three-game homestand on Sunday afternoon, when they welcome Indiana Tech to Clinton. Kickoff is set for noon.