Eagles Blanked by Gonzaga, 4-0

Eagles fall to 0-6-0 on season with loss to neighboring rival

The Eastern Washington University women's soccer team is still looking for its first win of the 2011 season. The Eagles dropped a 4-0 decision to Gonzaga on Saturday (Sept. 10) in Cheney, Wash.

With the win, Gonzaga improved to 4-2-0 on the season and upheld its undefeated record when playing in Cheney, now at 8-0-1.

In the ninth minute, Gonzaga's Katey Pennington made a quick run up the flank and sent a cross to Emma Dolcetti, who was waiting on the near post. Dolcetti punched the ball in past freshman goal keeper Natalie Schwery, who was making her first start of the season, for the first Bulldog goal of the afternoon.

Unfortunately for the Eagles, the tallies continued to add up on the wrong side of the scoreboard.

At the 21:22 minute mark, Emily Eckmann fired a shot from a tough angle, and the ball drifted into the top corner, giving the Bulldogs a 2-0 lead. Dolcetti scored for the second time at the 51:48 mark on a textbook header off Sarah Rhodes' corner kick.

"That corner kick … now that was a great goal," said head coach George Hageage. "Gonzaga took care of its chances. We definitely made some mistakes, but Gonzaga finished. And when you have kids finishing those kind of opportunities, it can be deflating."

The fourth and final goal came when Katie Spangenberg latched on to a through ball from Rhodes and snuck it past Schwery.

Hageage has been encouraged this season by the improvement Eastern has made with each game, but today, he failed to see that progression.

"This is the first game where I was sitting here thinking, we took a step backwards," he said. "We didn't hold the ball very well, especially in the first half. We had more energy in the second, but still couldn't put it together. It's a product of having so many new faces. We tell them and reassure them they can do it, but when they're out there, everything is moving 100 miles per hour."

Despite giving up four goals, Schwery had three saves for her first complete game of the 2011 season. Senior Whitney Brannan took a season-high four shots, while four other Eagles fired at least one. Eastern was outshot in the game, 15-9.

"We struggled in transition," said Hageage. "We had some opportunities to score, but we ended up giving the ball away instead of finding the one person that was open. Gonzaga just played really well and took care of its opportunities."

Eastern's young team falls to 0-6-0 on the season. Its next match will be in Cheney against Evergreen State College on Friday (Sept. 16). Kickoff is scheduled for 4 p.m.

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