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Griffin and O'Donnell push NU past JMU, 2-0

Article Written by Bobby Mullen
Published: October 1, 2012

HARRISONBURG, Va. -- The Northeastern women's soccer team scored at the book ends of the first half, tallying goals in the fourth and 43rd minutes, en route to a 2-0 victory over James Madison on Thursday night. The victory marks the first in program history for NU in Harrisonburg, as well as the Huskies' first road win of the season.

Redshirt sophomores Hannah O'Donnell (Dallas, Texas) and Devin Griffin (Whitman, Mass.) picked up Northeastern's two goals, and sophomore keeper Paige Burnett (Placentia, Calif.)  made five saves to pick up the clean sheet. Burnett's shutout was her third of the season, and her third in her last four contests. The Huskies move to 4-7 on the year with the victory, and up their CAA record to 2-1.

Griffin's goal was her first in more than two years, after missing the majority of 2010 as a medical redshirt and all of 2011 as an NCAA exemption. The 2009 CAA Player of the Year scored 14 goals as a rookie in '09, leading to Second Team All-America honors.

NU outshot James Madison 11-9 on the day, with the Dukes holding a 5-4 edge in shots on goal. Senior captain Greta Samuelsdottir (Kopavogur, Iceland) led the way for NU with fives shots. Classmate Sandra Magnusdottir (Reykjavik, Iceland) and junior Hanna Terry (Park City, Utah) tallied assists in the win.

The contest was barely five minutes old when Northeastern struck for the game's first tally.  Magnusdottir took a throw from Burnett before lobbing a long pass to O'Donnell. The Texan was wide open on the break and beat JMU keeper Kate Courter one on one to pick up her first goal of the season in the fourth minute.

Elissa Halik picked up JMU's first shot on goal of the contest in the 32nd minute, but Burnett corralled the easy save.

With a touch over two minutes left in the half, Terry fed a lead pass to Griffin, who ripped a shot into the net before Courter could take it off her foot. The goal was the first for Griffin since Aug. 27, 2010, and Northeastern took a 2-0 lead into halftime.

Northeastern outshot James Madison 5-3 in the opening frame, including a 3-1 edge in shots on goals. The Dukes were chippy in the first stanza, out fouling the Huskies, 9-3.

The Dukes used a corner kick to generate the first chance of the second half in the 56th minute, but a Kelly Germain blast from deep in the box skipped wide of net. Katie Hyland had a golden opportunity in the 65th minute, heading one that Burnett made a huge save on to keep the Dukes off the board. Burnett made another tough stop in the 71st, lunging to stop a Becky Sparks header off a corner kick.

Terry nearly tacked on an insurance goal in the 85th minute, but her open break ended up with a shot ringing the crossbar.  NU withheld JMU's late advances to pick up the victory.

The Huskies have the rest of the weekend off before returning home on Thursday, Oct. 4 to continue conference play with the Drexel Dragons. Game time at Parsons Field is set for 4 p.m.

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