Rattray's Early Goal Keeps ISU Soccer Undefeated
Aug. 30, 2008
EVANSTON, Ill. - Keeping with the trend of Redbirds scoring their first-career goals this season, junior midfielder Raquel Rattray scored her first goal as a Redbird to give the Illinois State women's soccer team a 1-0 win over Loyola at the Lakeside Invitational on Saturday, August 30. The Redbirds recorded their first shutout of the season to improve to 3-0-0 on the year.
Rattray's decisive goal came in the 32nd minute as she blasted a shot into the upper corner from 25 yards away. She became the fifth Redbird this season to score her first-career goal. Rattray had an assist in each of her first two seasons.
"This was a really nice win for us," said head coach Drew Roff. "Unlike the games last weekend, I thought the first half was a better performance. We came out strong and played the way I knew we could from the start. It was very warm on the field, so I tried to use a lot of players and keep fresh legs out there. I told the players before the game that was going to be our gameplan and I wanted to make sure that the level of intensity stayed just as high regardless of who was on the field. They did a great job of doing just that."
Illinois State had all of its six shots in the game in the first half. Senior midfielder Mel Routledge and freshman forward Nicole Russell led the team with two each while Rattray and sophomore forward Alyssa Schulz each had one. Despite not recording a shot in the second half, the Redbirds held on for the win.
Junior goalkeeper Katie Grill-Donovan made three saves in goal to record her first shutout of the season. She now has 12 in her career, putting her in fourth place on the ISU all-time list.
"Getting the shutout was big," said Roff. "I told the players at halftime that we were going to try to score again, but I wanted to defense to play just as well. The defense stayed organized and didn't give Loyola many scoring opportunities."
The win snapped Illinois State's four-game winless streak (three losses, one tie) against Loyola and improved the Redbirds' record to 6-3-1 all-time against the Ramblers. It was also ISU's first shutout win against Loyola since 1999.
"Loyola is a great program that has had a lot of success recently," Roff said. "I respect the way they play. Cynthia Morote-Ariza is a player who is capable of scoring at any time and we were able to hold her in check. We knew we would have to play our best game of the year to win today and we did that."
The Redbirds conclude competition at the Lakeside Invitational Monday when they face host Northwestern at 3:30 p.m.