On Tuesday night, the SFU women’s soccer team hosted the Saint Martin’s Saints. The Clan controlled the game from start to finish, but only Emma Pringle was able to find the back of the net, doing so three times.
In the game’s early moments, the Clan flirted with scoring multiple times, controlling the ball in the Saint Martin’s half. In the 16th minute, Pringle scored the highly anticipated first goal of the game, taking a perfect low-driven cross from Katelyn Erhardsen down the right wing and sliding it into the net.
Shortly after, Pringle controlled a cross from the left side of the field, this time via Jenna-lee Baxter and tapped it in for her second goal of the game, a mirror image of the first. The assist gave Baxter her league-leading 23rd point of the season, in only 13 games so far this season.
The Clan went into halftime with a 2–0 lead, and all the scoring chances in the game.
Pringle completed her hattrick eight minutes into the second half, once again after handling a cross from the wing. This time, her goal required more effort, as she dribbled to her left and chipped the ball over the keeper’s right arm and into the net. Shortly after, she was substituted out — likely to rest her before SFU’s next game on Thursday.
The Clan played out the rest of the game, controlling possession and denying the Saints chance after chance for the remainder of the second half.
Despite controlling the game, head coach Annie Hamel was not quite satisfied with the team’s performance.
“I thought our overall play wasn’t up to our standard,” Hamel noted. “The decision-making was poor and we got out of good habits because we were playing a lesser opponent, and the girls’ mindset was different because they knew they could get away with more.”
This is the mentality of good teams; they’re always looking to improve. SFU has had a fantastic start to the season, and are now 9–3–1 overall with a 7–1–1 conference record. The only team they’re trailing in the GNAC is Concordia University, who have a 7–0–1 record.
“The senior leadership is extraordinary,” said Hamel about her team. “The experience the six seniors come with is the difference from the previous years.”
The Clan will now host Seattle Pacific on Thursday night, who are currently fourth in the GNAC with a 5–3–0 record. Kickoff is at 5 p.m.
“The scheduling from the GNAC needs to get sorted because that’s just not safe to play this much in such a short period of time. It will be a tough match-up and certainly a day full of emotions as it is senior day!” said Hamel.
Peak player of the game: Emma Pringle
Whenever a player has a hattrick, they are going to be noticed. Pringle’s three goals were the difference on the night, and now give her a GNAC leading 11 goals. Despite the effort, Hamel still thinks she has more to offer.
“[Pringle] didn’t play her best game. She’s a special player, there’s no doubt, but today she struggled getting into a rhythm. Still, when you’re as special as she is, an off day can still result into three goals.”