Aug. 29, 2009
COLLEGE STATION, Texas - The Purdue women's soccer team upset sixth-ranked Texas A&M 3-2 Friday at the Aggie Soccer Stadium.
"As a staff we are really proud of the effort the girls put in," head coach Robert Klatte said. "We dealt with a very talented Texas A&M side. We had some fantastic performances from some key players. Our goalkeeper was called upon and made several key saves. Our back line bent a lot, but I think they answered the call almost every time."
Purdue (3-0-0) scored on the first touch of the ball as senior Sylvia Forbes took the opening kickoff and blasted a shot from midfield that went over the outstretched hand of the keeper and into the back of the net. The goal was the second of the season for the Whitby, Ontario, native and 10th of her career.
Forbes' goal, which was scored four seconds into the game, ties the NCAA record for the fastest goal to begin a game. Forbes tied North Carolina's Yael Averbuch, who scored four seconds into a game at Yale on Sept. 3, 2006. The previous Purdue record was 22 seconds set by Kim Comisar vs. Eastern Michigan on Aug. 31, 2003.
Texas A&M (1-1-0) tied the score in the ninth minute off a free kick. After a foul was called on Purdue, Bri Young took the kick from just outside the left corner of the penalty box. Her kick hit the right post and the rebound was put into the net by Amber Gnatzig.
Texas A&M added another score off a corner kick in the 10th minute. The ball was sailed into the box by Becca Herrera and was headed toward the net by Young. Goalkeeper Jenny Bradfisch got a hand on the ball, but it was flipped straight up and into the goal.
The back-and-forth game continued as sophomore Katie Leinert tied the score with a goal in the 18th minute. Leinert took a pass from senior co-captain Jessica Okoroafo and blasted a shot past the goalkeeper from the top of the penalty box. The goal was Leinert's second this season and third of her career.
In the second half, the assault on each goal continued as the teams combined to put 13 shots on the board, four of which were on goal. Purdue finally broke through, and the only Texas native on the roster notched the score.
Freshman Vanessa Ibewuike scored her first career goal in the 77th minute. After tracking down a ball at the edge of the penalty box, the Plano, Texas, native outran an Aggie defender and pushed the ball past the diving keeper and into the net.
"I think it's kind of ironic that it was the Texas A&M game where I scored my first goal," Ibewuike said. "It was good to do it in front of my family and some of my friends. I was really happy with how our whole team played."
Purdue put forth a herculean effort in defending the Aggies. Defenders Forbes, Liz Secue and Remi Gibba played the entire 90 minutes, and Bradfisch ended the game with a season-high eight saves. Texas A&M outshot the Boilermakers 19-8 and took nine corner kicks to Purdue's two.
Purdue improves to 2-6-1 all-time against opponents ranked in the top 10. The Boilermakers have won their last two such meetings, having also defeated No. 1-ranked Portland on Sept. 9, 2007.
The announced crowd of 6,589 is the largest group to ever see a Purdue soccer game. The previous high of 2,919 was set Oct. 24, 2003 at Indiana.
"On the offensive end, we had several nice finishes," Klatte said. "I'm sure it was nice for Vanessa to get a game-winning goal in her home state. The victory comes down to our commitment to press the game and try to deny the opposing team time and space with the ball. Our kids, to a person, played their roles fantastically well."
Purdue returns home to host the Boilermaker Challenge Cup next week. The Boilermakers hit the field Sept. 5 against Valparaiso and then take on Ball State Sept. 7. The Cup begins Sept. 3 when Ball State and Valparaiso square off from the Varsity Soccer Complex. All three games begin at 5:30 p.m. ET.