Dolan sets school record with 10th shutout of season

Lauren Ferrara

Villanova women’s soccer notched its 10th shutout of the season on Wednesday in a 4-0 victory over the University of Pennsylvania, improving the ‘Cats to 11-5-1. In the win, senior goalkeeper Chrissy Dolan set a new school record for most shutouts in a season.

Dolan credits her new record to the stellar defense that surrounds her.

“I knew going into the game about the record, but the win at the end of the game is what counts,” she said. “The ridiculous defense around me makes my job a lot easier, this win was a complete team effort.”

The Wildcat defense was not the only part of their game hard at work. The ‘Cat’s offense had scoring opportunities early in the first half but were unable to convert. Senior captain Candice MacDonald started the team rolling at the 43:29 mark when she scored off a Lindsey Finnegan assist. Finnegan knocked a touch pass to the right of the net where MacDonald beat Penn keeper Anna Halse sending the ‘Cats into halftime with a 1-0 lead.

“We knew at halftime that we had to execute better,” Janessa Jeltema said. “After Candice’s late goal we had the confidence to continue into next half with a stronger offensive push.”

The second half offensive domination was lead by Jeltema, who scored the next goal early in the half. In the 49th minute Elizabeth Dauble launched a beautiful ball into the box. Jeltema was there to finish the play heading the ball into the right corner, extending the lead to 2-0.

“After Janessa’s goal, it took the wind out of Penn’s sails,” Dolan said. “We established ourselves as a threat in the attacking third and were very confident in our scoring abilities.” Jeltema’s offensive authority continued into the 70th minute, where she beat several Quaker defenders before dishing out a beautiful feed to Finnegan. Finnegan handled the ball and sent a low liner to the left of the net, propelling the ‘Cats lead to 3-0.’Nova polished the game off with a final goal at 79:47 by Erica Stewart.

Stewart handled the ball in the middle of the box from Jeltema’s assist and finalized the second half domination in route to the shutout win. The Wildcats’ defense took over the remainder of the half under the experience of the leadership of senior captains MacDonald, Dolan and Michelle Biehl. Currently, the ‘Cats are 15th in the nation in goals against average and are 21st in shutout percentage. Dolan has 10 shutouts in 17 starts this season and has held opponents to an astounding .58 goals per game.

The Wildcats get back into action this Sunday when they host University of Pittsburgh at 11 a.m. Sunday’s game will be senior day for the ‘Cats, as the University celebrates Homecoming weekend.