DENVER – Freshmen Samantha Feller (Grand Junction, Colo.) and Hannah Hiatt (Parker, Colo.) scored goals in the opening 35 minutes to lead the University of Denver women’s soccer team to a 2-0 win over South Dakota on Friday night in both teams’ Summit League opener at the University of Denver Soccer Stadium.
“It’s nice when you’ve been training a certain way for a couple weeks and then your team comes out and executes the way we did in the first half tonight,” head coach Jeff Hooker said. “It was one of our best 45 minutes of movement off the ball and crisp passing. We executed all the basic elements of soccer, and not only did we execute, but we did it quickly. South Dakota made adjustments and were good in the second half, but we’ll take another cleansheet and look ahead now to Sunday.”
Feller found the back of the net for the third time in her last two matches to put Denver ahead in the 21st minute off assists from classmate Natalie Beckman (Denver, Colo.) and junior Hannah Adler (Oak Park, Calif.). Adler played the ball out wide to the left to the run of Beckman, who crossed the ball just outside the six-yard box to the run of Feller. The Denver freshman netted her third, heading it by the keeper into the left side of the net.
Beckman’s assist was the third of her rookie season, while Adler’s was her third of the campaign as well and the 11th of her career.
The Pioneers doubled their advantage in the 35th minute courtesy of Hiatt’s first career goal. Junior captain Brittany Wilson (Littleton, Colo.) restarted play after a South Dakota foul from the midline, playing the free kick to the penalty spot. Sophomore Macee Barlow (Las Vegas, Nev.) was the first head to the free kick, finding Hiatt’s run to the right side of the six-yard box. Hiatt buried her first of her collegiate career into the open net from five yards out. Wilson and Barlow each earned the first assists of their Pioneer careers.
Denver outshot South Dakota 12-7 in the match and took five of the seven corners taken.
The Pioneers have had nine goals from freshmen this season, including each of the last five. DU has also had 11 of its last 13 goals scored by underclassmen.
UP NEXT: Denver will close out a quick two-match homestand on Sunday when the Pioneers take on Omaha at the University of Denver Soccer Stadium. Kickoff is set for 12 p.m. MT, and the match will be broadcast live on Altitude with Tyler Maun and Chris Bianchi on the call.
TICKETS: Single-game tickets are on sale and can be purchased online here, or by calling 303-871-4625.
PIONEER MOVEMENT: Fans interested in making a donation to the women's soccer program can do so by clicking here. Your contribution will make a direct impact on the success of YOUR Pioneers. Thank you in advance for your unwavering support of our student-athletes and their quest for excellence.
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