By Arielle Gordon
The Colorado College women’s soccer team hasn’t been able to play on Stewart Field yet, but that hasn’t stopped them from jumping out to a 5–1 record to start the season.
Stewart Field is still being resurfaced, so the Tigers have been playing on Washburn Field, and now hold a 5–0 record at home. They begin Mountain West conference at home this weekend and are looking to continue their winning streak.
“Our amazing team chemistry on and off the field has been something that I strongly believe has led us to have such a great season this year,” forward Abby Hubbard ’22 said. “I can say with confidence that we are all best friends with one another and that especially makes practices and games so much fun because we all enjoy what we do together.”
Their most recent 2–0 home victory against Southern Illinois University on Sept. 22 was truly a team effort. Goalkeeper Abby Opperman ’23 stopped two of the best scoring chances SIU players sent her way. The first required a dive to her left, and she blocked the second (which was a penalty kick for SIU) by jumping at just the right moment and knocking the ball out of play. This performance earned her the Mountain West Defensive Player of the Week title.
By keeping SIU off the board in the first half, Opperman allowed Hubbard to give the Tigers the lead when she scored on a free kick in the 74th minute. Hubbard kicked from well outside the 18-yard box, but put the ball in the bottom right corner of the goal, past the diving SIU goalkeeper.
“It felt very rewarding to score a free kick goal because I have been practicing them a lot and I was very excited to get the chance to finally score one in a game,” Hubbard said. “My teammates are also confident in my ability to take them and that in turn raised my confidence level to step up to take the free kicks that game.”
Just over two minutes later, midfielder Jenna Wilt ’21 scored her third goal of the season when she kicked in the ball after Hubbard’s second penalty shot of the game barely deflected off the goal. Wilt leads the team in total points, having scored 12. She is only second in goals scored following forward Jaqui Hand ’22, who has scored four goals this season.
“It is a great feeling to be contributing to the team’s success, and to know that we have points in every game coming from lots of different people is really important,” Wilt said. “We have a really deep bench and everyone plays an important part in every game.”
This win was a big morale boost for the Tigers as they begin conference play. They were able to rebound from losing 2–0 last weekend to the University of Illinois in their only road game so far this season.
“We are all excited and ready for conference play,” Wilt said. “Having the first four conference games at home is something we are really looking forward to. We will be traveling to Boise State and Utah in a few weeks, which are two really tough teams that we are excited to play against.”
The Tigers will host San Jose State University on Friday, Sept. 27 at 7 p.m. and Fresno State University on Sunday, Sept. 29 at 1 p.m.