Oct. 12, 2013
OMAHA, Neb. – As Amber Paul began her overtime run to glory, she gathered what remaining energy was left after nearly 100 minutes and charged into the box.
Elise Wyatt’s cross from the right wing was true, and Paul's perfectly timed slide-kick redirected the cross into the net back post in DePaul’s exhilarating 2-1 BIG EAST Conference victory over Creighton on Saturday night.
It was the Blue Demons’ third win in a row and improved their record to 9-2-2, 3-1-1 in the BIG EAST.
“I went in as hard as I possibly could because I didn’t want to play another overtime,” Paul said about her first goal of the season. “Elise always gets a good cross off, and I hit it back post.
“I’ve never been so excited in my life. Our team grinded it out so hard tonight, and we play for each other so well.”
It was indeed a night of firsts for Paul and Erin Pekovitch, who found the back of the net in the seventh minute after a Wyatt cross deflected off a Creighton defender. That was Pekovitch’s first collegiate goal.
“Erin and I were talking before the game,” Paul said. “We have both been working so hard and had so many chances but hadn’t scored. We decided this was going to be the game.
“I saw her score that first goal and watched how excited she was after it went in. I wanted to do the same thing.”
In the 17th minute, Creighton (9-4-1, 2-2-1) tied the match 1-1 on a goal by Madelyn Buckner.
“Creighton is one of the better teams in the BIG EAST, and it took us a while to settle into the game,” said DePaul coach Erin Chastain. “Other than Erin’s goal, I wasn’t happy with the first half.
“We came out strong in the second half and created some really good scoring chances. It’s huge to get three points on the road. With more away games than home games in the BIG EAST this season, we have to steal some points on the road.
“It was great to see how Elise set up both goals. Sometimes when you get so focused on scoring goals, you don’t think about the other parts of your game. Elise is doing a great job of scoring and setting up her teammates.”
DePaul returns to Wish Field for a 3 p.m. BIG EAST match on Thursday against Butler. The Blue Demons are 5-0-1 at home this season.
NOTES: The three-game winning streak has brought DePaul nine crucial points in the BIG EAST standings… Creighton’s goal was the first score the Blue Demons have given up since a 1-0 loss at Providence back on Sept. 29… Wyatt’s assist gave the sophomore forward a team-high four in that category, and she also leads the team with five goals and 14 points… with Pekovitch's goal, all six of the Blue Demon forwards have found the back of the net... Creighton outshot DePaul 19-16 and both teams had nine shots on goal… all three of Pekovitch’s shots were right on target while Ashleigh Goddard had three shots with two on goal… both of Paul’s shots were on frame while Nina Kodros and MaryKate Cicinelli each had two shots with one on goal… goalkeeper Alejandria Godinez came away with eight saves… Goddard, Kodros, Paul, Rachel Pitman, Kylie Nordness, Brianna Ryce and Rebekah Roller all played the entire 99 minutes.