Flagstaff, Ariz. - The San Jose State University women’s soccer team and Northern Arizona University played 110 minutes without a goal being scored by either side, as the non-conference contest at Lumberjack Stadium ended the way it began, 0-0, on Friday, September 14.
With the tie, San Jose State moves its record to 0-2-2 on the season. Northern Arizona, a second straight Spartan foe from the Big Sky Conference, continues a program-best unbeaten start to the year at 3-0-2 overall. It was the first all-time meeting between the teams.
In the absence of junior forward Jessica Scott and sophomore midfielder Hallsie Pacheco, respectively, sophomore Roxy Kamal, a San Jose native out of Presentation High School, and freshman Danielle Drago, out of Saint Francis High School, made their first collegiate starts.
Drago was credited with the game’s first shot, the first of her Spartan career, at the 3:27 mark, with senior Lumberjack goalkeeper Elizabeth Winkelblech making the stop. Winkelblech, the reigning Big Sky “Defensive Player of the Week” who would ultimately extend her school-record individual shutout streak to five games and 504:53 to begin the season, then denied senior midfielder Nicole Irwin in the 12th minute and Drago again in the 15th.
In between, redshirt sophomore Spartan goalie Marissa Dayton saved a shot by NAU freshman Kristi Andreasson at 12:21.
Redshirt freshman Nina Butera, like Kamal a graduate of San Jose’s Presentation High School, replaced Dayton in goal at 19:53, marking her college debut, and was credited with her first college save in the 24th minute on a shot by Karri Currier, another NAU freshman.
Northern Arizona out-shot San Jose State for the match, 15-12, but neither team could crack the scoring column through the second half and two 10-minute overtime periods.
Dayton made one save while Butera had seven for San Jose State, combining on the shutout. Winkelblech wound up with six stops for the home side.
Junior forward Liz Behlen took a game-high four shots for the Spartans, with two on goal. Drago added three shots, with two of hers also on goal. Andreasson, Currier, and a third freshman, Carolyn Savage, had a team-high three shots apiece for the Lumberjacks, with all three of Savage’s efforts on goal off the bench.
Center back Kristin Krale, a San Jose native out of Independence High School, made her 65th straight start for San Jose State, while fellow senior tri-captain Jackie Zabek, a midfielder, made her 65th consecutive appearance in a Spartan uniform. Junior Brittny Beshore made her 40th straight start as an outside defender.
Mollyrose McBride made her collegiate debut as a substitute for Drago midway through the first half after redshirting as a freshman in 2006.
“We played well,” said fourth-year San Jose State head coach Dave Siracusa. “We had numerous opportunities (to score), and we looked more dangerous than (Northern Arizona). Our chances were more dangerous. Jennifer Guadagnolo played great. Nicole Irwin had a couple of chances and played well. Danielle Drago almost scored. We looked the better team. We just weren’t able to put one away. But we showed great heart and played great.
“Nina Butera was fabulous, which was pretty cool to see. She made some great saves and her punts were going 70 yards. We feel good (as a group). We are still just searching for that first win. Traditionally, we are a slow-starting team, but if this is slow’ for us, we’ll be fine.”
San Jose State now remains in Flagstaff for a single, neutral-site meeting with Southern Utah University on Sunday afternoon, September 16. The Thunderbirds will enter the match with an identical record of 0-2-2. Kick-off at Lumberjack Stadium for the first meeting between the non-conference opponents is set for 2:35 p.m. The Spartans will return to San Jose by bus immediately following the contest.
San Jose State (0-2-2) - 0 0 0 0 - 0
Northern Arizona (3-0-2) - 0 0 0 0 - 0
SJSU - 12
NAU - 15
SJSU - 8 (Marissa Dayton-1; Nina Butera-7)
NAU - 6 (Elizabeth Winkelblech-6)
SJSU - 1
NAU - 3
SJSU - 8
NAU - 10