Oct. 17, 2013
CHICAGO – Elise Wyatt and Nina Kodros teamed up on a chilly Thursday afternoon to make sure DePaul remained undefeated at Wish Field this season.
Kodros’ terrific cross and Wyatt’s finish in the 60th minute resulted in a 1-0 BIG EAST Conference victory over Butler that extended the Blue Demons’ winning streak to four.
DePaul (10-2-2, 4-1-1) is 6-0-1 this season in Lincoln Park with the home finale coming up on Senior Day Sunday against BIG EAST leader Marquette. The Blue Demons remain tied with Georgetown for second place in the BIG EAST.
“Nina hit a rocket of a kick and I knew it would skip right through,” Wyatt said of Kodros’ first assist on the season. “The goal was a no-brainer. I just had to tap it in. Kudos to Nina for a world-class ball.
“When I saw Nina dribble up the left side, I told myself to make the extra effort. That last 10 percent goes a long way. I had seen Rachel Pitman and Amber Paul score like that on late runs with extra hustle.”
Until that goal in the second half, DePaul had struggled against Butler’s five-defender alignment.
“At first, I had no idea what to do,” Wyatt said. “It was so congested in the back line and our forwards did not expect that. It was a little confusing where to go. Every time you got the ball, it seemed like two or three people were on you.”
That style of play clogged up the Blue Demons in the attacking third.
“Five defenders are difficult to break down, and it’s hard to prepare for that,” said DePaul coach Erin Chastain. “I’ve never played against that formation. It didn’t allow our team to take ownership of the game.
“This wasn’t our best day in the field, and we normally don’t give away as many chances as we did today. I have higher standards and expectations for this group. I was just surprised by our performance. Maybe the players were looking ahead to Senior Day and Marquette.”
Nonetheless, DePaul came away with three critical points in the BIG EAST standings against Butler (9-5-2, 2-4-0).
“You’re happy to get a win and score a nice goal,” Chastain said. “We had some good performances by Rachel Pitman, Rebekah Roller, Nina and Elise.”
This was Wyatt’s team-leading sixth goal of the season and her first since a 3-2 overtime win over Colgate on Sept. 15.
“It was nice to get that goal,” Wyatt said. “Sometimes it’s not always about scoring goals. It’s also about setting up your teammates with an assist or feeding the long ball.”
DePaul faces No. 21 Marquette (12-3-0, 5-0-0) at 1 p.m. on Sunday at Wish Field.
NOTES: The seven-game undefeated streak at home is a single-season, program best, eclipsing the six-game streak in 2009… goalkeeper Alejandria Godinez recorded her sixth shutout of the season… the Blue Demons have given up just one goal in their last four matches… this is DePaul’s first double-digit win season since 2010 when Chastain’s group was 11-9-2… Butler outshot DePaul 18-6 and had a 4-3 edge in shots on goal… Wyatt, Ana Greik and MaryKate Cicinelli had the shots on frame for the Blue Demons… DePaul is No. 4 in the nation in save percentage and No. 18 in goals-against average… Wyatt leads the team with six goals, four assists and 16 points.