The Arizona State Sun Devils won their home opener 3-1 against the Montana Griz after a bizarre week for both schools.
With Hurricane Lane approaching Hawai’i, the Sun Devils’ travel plans got bumped mid-week, cancelling the game against Hawai’i on Friday, August 24th and against the Montana Griz on Sunday, August 26th.
The Sun Devils moved their home opener to Thursday, August 23rd against the Montana Griz at 7 PM MST. However, the Sun Devils weather struggles continued as the game was delayed to 8:45 PM MST due to a lightning storm.
Sydney Day said that this week in practice they worked on playing pretty soccer and just settle down, and not just the long balls.
The Sun Devils did not let the weather stop them from playing this game even after two delays.
The Sun Devils started the scoring off in the 22nd when freshman forward Nicole Douglas scored the first goal of the season for the Sun Devils. After having received a cross from freshman forward Cori Sullivan and volleyed the ball into the back of the net. Giving the Sun Devils a 1-0 lead.
The Sun Devils lead would not last long as just 2 minutes later Ellie Otteson of the Griz would deflect the ball off an ASU defender and past senior goalkeeper Sydney Day.
Just a few seconds later, the weather would delay the game again this time for 30 minutes.
“We were really pumped up during the delay. I think the rain delay made us more excited,” Douglas said. “We really wanted to win this game and come out here and prove ourselves.”
Shortly after the delay, Douglas gave the Sun Devils back the lead as she would score again in the 34th minute after winning the ball off a turnover by Montana goalkeeper Claire Howard at the Montana 18-yard box.
The Sun Devils would end the first half with a 2-1 lead over the Griz.
Both teams would exchange shots in the beginning of the second half, Day would finish the day with 5 saves.
”That was her first appearance as a Sun Devil in a competitive game. So, for her to come in and pull off some nice saves and get involved. I was really proud of her.” head coach Graham Winkworth said on Day.
In the 65th minute sophomore midfielder Amanda Jones and Sullivan would come on for freshman midfielder Olivia Nguyen and freshman midfielder Marleen Schimmer respectively.
Just one minute after the sub, Sullivan finished the ball into the back of the net off a break from the near side by Jones. Adding to the Sun Devils lead 3-1.
Both teams put on a good back and forth game, but the Sun Devils outlasted their opponents and held the 3-1 lead to end the game.
The Sun Devils will take the pitch again on Friday, August 31st at 7:00 PM MST against New Hampshire in the Sun Devil Classic, where they will also face Southeast Missouri State on Sunday, September 2nd at 1:30 PM MST.