Written by Student Assistant Christian Bond
McMinnville, Ore. – A pair of Lutes tallied their first goals of the season as the Pacific Lutheran University women's soccer team picked up a 2-0 win over Northwest Conference rival Linfield College on Sunday.
After a scoreless first half, PLU (12-2, 9-1 NWC) tallied its first goal in the 55th minute. Liz Griffith sent a cross in the box on a free kick that found Hailey Smoot, who tapped the ball in the net for a goal. Later in the 76th minute, Amber Richards scored on an assist from Kari Mills. The assists was Mills' second career helper, and the second in an as many days.
"Our team really found our stride in the second half," Head Coach Seth Spidahl said. "We had seven different players score this weekend. We are seeing other people step up and contribute, like Kari. Amber scored a huge second goal for us today. It's awesome to see other people contributing because obviously we have some other key offensive contributors. It was really a team effort."
The Lutes had offensive control throughout the first half, despite not scoring any goals. They outshot the Wildcats (6-7-1, 4-5-1 NWC) 4-1 in the opening half. That trend would continue as their shot total grew to nine in the second half, as PLU finished the game with 13 shots to Linfield's two.
Natalie Robinson picked up her 12th shutout of the season in Sunday's win. She had a relatively easy day in goal, with the PLU defensive backline not allowing a shot on goal all game.
"Our defending was great today. We only allowed them two shots," Spidahl said. "I'm really proud of the team. They found a way to win 2-0 and be pretty dominant about it. Overall, I'm very pleased."
The Lutes have a midweek matchup this week as the Battle of the South Sound resumes with a game at the University of Puget Sound on Wednesday at 3 p.m. Then on Sunday, the women host Willamette University on East Field at 12 p.m.