The Arizona State Sun Devils (5-2) won their last non-conference game 1-0 against the Weber State Wildcats (2-3-3) after a second half goal by Nicole Douglas.
The Sun Devils come back home after three away games, picking up two wins in that spell against South Dakota State, 2-0, and Northern Arizona University, 1-0. The Sun Devils have now won three straight and have not allowed a goal in 311 minutes of play.
In a scorcher in the desert, the Sun Devils and the Wildcats had a back-and-forth first half. The Wildcats would start the shooting out early, trying to test Sun Devil senior goalkeeper Sydney Day. But the Sun Devils held up and ended the first half 0-0 with the Wildcats.
“The way they set up is very difficult to break down and in the first half I felt that we were too impatient to get a goal too quickly,” head coach Graham WInkworth said on today’s game. “In the second half, we were a little more patient and we were able to create more quality chances as a result”
Day would finish the game with one save and come out with the clean sheet.
”One has less experience, so she is more for the future. The other two are fighting it out, but the way they are fighting it out in a positive manner. They are encouraging one and other and they are pushing each other in training,” Winkworth said on the goalkeeping situation.
In the second half, the Sun Devils came out hot with nine shots and three of those on goal.
Weber State had three yellow cards on the day, one in the first half to Cambrie Lake and two in the second half to Chansi Crompton and Megan Price.
In the 62nd minute, the Sun Devils finally break through after senior forward Jemma Purfield crossed the ball inside the six-yard box to freshman forward Nicole Douglas who deflected the ball past the approaching Wildcats goalkeeper, Nikki Pittman.
”I know when I have a quality center forward like Nicole Douglas running onto the ball, it will go into the back of the net. I was really happy with that,” Purfield said on her teammate.
Douglas leads the Sun Devils In goals this season with five goals in six games played and only 361 minutes. Douglas averages one goal every 72 minutes.
The game would end 1-0 in favor of the Sun Devils over the Wildcats.
The Sun Devils were hoping for a bigger win but controlled the game in the second half ending the game with 11 shots to the Wildcats four, and the Sun Devils had four on target to the Wildcats one.
The Sun Devils will begin their stretch of Pac-12 play this weekend.
“It is a tough conference, but I think we are ready for it. We have been building all year for it and have got some great results here coming in,” Purfield said.
The Sun Devils will head to Berkeley, California to take on Cal (4-3-1) in their first conference game of the season on Saturday, September 22, 2018 at 1:00 PM MST.