MILWAUKEE, Wis. - Senior goalkeeper Stefanie Turner and the deep Central Michigan women’s soccer team withstood a strong offensive performance from No. 12 Marquette to force a scoreless double-overtime draw, 0-0, on a hot Monday afternoon.
Turner turned in an outstanding effort in goal with 10 saves for her seventh career shutout to anchor the Chippewas (3-1-1), keeping the offensively aggressive Golden Eagles (3-0-1) off the scoreboard with seven saves in regulation and three in the two crucial overtime periods. The draw breaks Marquette’s three-game winning streak to start the season.
“Credit goes to Marquette for the way they possessed the ball and really, really tested us and forced us to be organized and compact,” head coach Neil Stafford said. “I’m proud of the defense because when you play a team who moves the ball like Marquette does it is very difficult to not present passing lanes or channels, and I’m elated with our maturity, our discipline and our ability to stay focused as a team and not individuals.”
The draw is the best result against a ranked opponent since the Chippewas defeated No. 24 Purdue in the first round of the 2009 NCAA Tournament, 2-0.
“I’ve told these women from day one that we absolutely can compete with the top programs in the country,” Stafford said. “I’m very happy that the players have the self-belief that is required to play at this top national level, and I’m proud they’re reaching their potential at competing at this level.”
With 22 total shots, 11 of which were on goal, Marquette was the more aggressive of the two sides, but Turner, senior defenders Katie Slaughter and Bailey Brandon, and the rest of the CMU defense were all up to the task, combining for 11 saves in the shutout. In addition to Turner’s 10 saves, the defense blocked a shot in the final two seconds of the first half to preserve a halftime tie.
The Golden Eagles also very nearly earned their potential game-winning goal in the final 13 seconds of regulation goal that was disallowed due to an offside call, ensuring the overtime periods.
The Chippewas outshot the Golden Eagles, 2-1, in the first overtime, with two shots by junior midfielder Kaely Schlosser, the second of which went just over the crossbar.
Late in the second overtime period, the Chippewas withstood four corner kicks and two shots on goal, four shots in total, in the final five minutes to close the match. The Golden Eagles had 12 corners throughout the match, compared to just two for Central Michigan.
“I thought our fitness, depth and ability to interchange so many players was absolutely paramount in playing through the entire game and even kicking it up a notch in the first overtime,” Stafford said. “We had players who didn’t play today who are very high-quality players, which is a testament to our depth.”
The Chippewas’ impressive roster depth was crucial in keeping fresh legs throughout the match, which featured temperatures in the high 80s, to preserve the draw. A total of 19 field players made appearances for the Maroon and Gold, just two of whom - Turner and Slaughter - played the full 110 minutes.
Six of the 16 Marquette players competed the full 110 minutes in the match.
“The team is becoming closer and closer because everyone is seeing exactly how much value each individual player brings to the cause each of the matches,” Stafford said. “They’re all accepting the responsibility of what it means to be a CMU Chippewa, and they’re all doing a good job shouldering that responsibility.”
Brandon, senior forward Laura Twidle, senior midfielder Ashley Mejilla junior forward Nicole Samuel, and sophomore forward Morgan Wilcoxon each recorded a shot apiece.
The weather conditions in Monday’s match were a preview of what is to come for the Chippewas as they travel to Texas this week for two matches, the first against Texas State Friday, Sept. 9 at 9 p.m. EST. The Chippewas then play at No. 17 Texas A&M Sunday at 2 pm.