SANTA CRUZ, Calif — In Saturday action here at the Slugfest women’s soccer Tournament, Whitman’s Mackenzie Hughes and Justine Kovak scored second half goals to break a scoreless tie. Whitman went on to post a 2-0 win over La Verne University. For the Missionaries the win marked Whitman’s best start since 2003 as Whitman improves to 3-0 and remains unscored upon.
Whitman outshot the Leopards 26-6 and have outshot their three opponents by a combined 59 to 11. La Verne only managed two shots on goal, but each was turned away by Missionary goalie Emily Davis, who has not given up a goal this season.
After a scoreless first half, Whitman broke the tie in the 54th minute when Elyse Laurin received the ball wide, beat a player and then sent a cross into the box. Kovak finished with a terrific header, depositing the ball in the back of the net. It was Kovak’s first goal of the season and Laurin’s second assist.
With less than 3 minutes left, Hughes clinched the match with her team-leading third goal on a penalty kick. Moments earlier, Emma Onstad-Hawes drew the foul that led to Hughes’ penalty kick.
“We had to battle today,” Missionary coach Heather Cato said. “We came out a bit flat in the first half but were able to play our style in the second. I’m proud of these young women for what they’ve accomplished, but we know as a team that we have to keep working and improving ourselves in order to continue moving forward.”
In 2003, Whitman went 4-0 before losing. The Missionaries go for No. 4 here today at 3 p.m. against 0-2-1 Redlands.