Dunst keeps ‘Cats undefeated with double OT goal

Christopher A. Smith

On Sept. 6 at the Villanova Soccer Complex, senior midfielder Kristin Dunst scored a goal with 1:44 remaining in the second overtime to give the women’s soccer team a 1-0 victory over La Salle, keeping ‘Nova’s record perfect at 3-0.

The score brought an end to a physical game that saw the Explorers outplay a superior Villanova team. The ‘Cats were sloppy in missing several chances to put the game away before Dunst’s last-minute heroics.

“We were disappointed with the way we played against La Salle,” Dunst said. “This was our most physical game yet, but it should not have come down to two overtimes. We had too many missed opportunities.”

Luckily for Villanova, Dunst took advantage of her opportunity, which came at the 108:16 mark.

“Julie (Battista) crossed it, and it deflected off one of our forwards,” Dunst said. “I just volleyed it to the upper right side of the net. I was going on a lot of adrenaline when I kicked it.”

Once her shot hit the back of the net, the celebration ensued, but it may have been one of relief rather than triumph.

“The main reason we were able to hold them off was because we are in better shape,” Dunst added. “We are able to play long into a game, while some other teams may struggle in the second overtime.”

Also of note in the win, junior goalkeeper Chrissy Dolan recorded the seventh shutout of her career and second consecutive of the season. Including Friday’s victory, Dolan’s career mark in goal for the ‘Cats stood at 8-0-1.Prior to their home-opening win against La Salle, the Wildcats defeated Lehigh, 2-0 on Sept. 4.

The offense was provided by freshman Kelly Breslin, who notched her team-leading third goal of the season. Laura Johnson assisted on Breslin’s goal and then added one of her own on a second-half penalty kick.

Villanova’s 3-0 record will be put to the test on its current road trip, which includes five games in 12 days. On Sept. 11, the ‘Cats traveled to Storrs, Conn. to take on perennial Big East powerhouse UConn.

“We just have to take this road trip one game at a time,” Dunst said. “We are going to stay focused and work together. We are confident that looking at our schedule, we have the ability to beat every team on it. That includes UConn.”

Villanova will look to its stingy defense, led by sophomore Michelle Biehl, senior Jennifer Carrigan and sophomore Patricia Misciagna to set the tone against the Huskies. It is the ‘Cats’ first Big East contest of the season. Following its trip to Connecticut, Villanova is back in action this weekend, taking on Towson today at 4 p.m. The Wildcats will stay in Maryland to battle the Naval Academy on Sunday at 1 p.m.