WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. -- Goals from Alex Hairston and Hadley Stuart less than a minute apart in the second half lifted Purdue women's soccer to a 2-0 season-opening win against Toledo Friday evening in the first game at the new-look Varsity Soccer Complex.
Jordan Pawlik assisted on both goals, which were scored 48 seconds apart in similar spots in the heart of the 18-yard box. The 48 seconds elapsed represents the shortest amount of time between goals in program history.
The Boilermakers (1-0) shut out Toledo in a season opener for the second year in a row. Hairston scored the only goal of the game in last season's 1-0 win in Northwest Ohio. She's the first player in program history to account for a game-winning goal in back-to-back season openers, as well as the first player to score in the first game of consecutive seasons since Annette Kent scored in four straight from 2000-03.
Purdue goalkeeper Clara Kridler made three nice defensive plays in the first half to assure the game was still scoreless at the break. She made a pair of point blank saves as well as a sliding stop of another loose ball with a Toledo player right on top of the play. Kridler made a 1-v-1 save versus UT's leading scorer from a year ago, Rachel MacLeod, near the right post in the 12th minute. In the 35th minute, Kridler was quick to react to a flicked corner kick, preventing a goal by Rio James.
Hairston's seventh career goal was scored in the 58th minute after a left-to-right cross from Pawlik. Shae Desmond connected a pass to Emma Lancaster, who quickly advanced the ball to Pawlik down the left flank. With the crowd of over 1,000 fans still celebrating the first goal of the season, Pawlik successfully connected a lead pass to Stuart in the 18-yard box that led to a shot inside the right post just moments later. It was Stuart's fourth career goal, all of which have come at the Varsity Soccer Complex.
The previous program record for the shortest amount of time between two goals both scored by Purdue was 55 seconds. Shauna Stapleton and current assistant coach Parrissa Eyorokon scored back-to-back in a November 2007 blowout win against Indiana.
Offensive opportunities were otherwise sparse for both teams on this night. Each side had just two shots on goal and there were only a combined four corner kicks. After fighting through the first half, the Purdue defense responded after the break, surrendering only two shots and hold Toledo without a corner kick.