August 29, 2012

Butler Knocks Off Big Ten Opponent Purdue

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - The Butler women's soccer team picked up a big win Wednesday night, beating Big Ten opponent Purdue, on the road, 1-0 in a non-conference match. The win marked Butler's first ever victory against the Boilermakers and first win over a Big Ten opponent since beating Indiana on Sept. 18, 2008. 

Freshman midfielder Sophia Maccagnone recorded the eventual game-winning goal for the Bulldogs off a penalty kick in the game's 67th minute.

While attempting to settle a pass from sophomore Stephanie Kaylor, Maccagnone was pushed from behind by Purdue junior midfielder Shae Desmond, setting up the penalty kick.

"Sophia [Maccagnone] earned the penalty kick," Butler head coach Tari St. John said. "It was fitting she stepped up to put it away for the game winner."

The Bulldogs (3-2-0) outshot Purdue 12-10 in the game and had five shots on goal, including two from Maccagnone. Sophomores Elise Kotsakis and Katie Reed each had one shot on goal.

Freshman goalkeeper Mackenzie Hopkins earned her third win in four starts while recording her third shutout of the season. The Lake Oswego, Ore. native had fives saves in the game, including a shot on goal by Purdue junior forward Hadley Stuart in the 84th minute.

"Mackenzie [Hopkins] was on a big stage tonight for a freshman and she was solid once again," St. John said. "When your goalkeeper is consistent and reliable, it positively effects every aspect of the game."

While the contributions of Hopkins and Maccagnone were more evident in the stat sheet, St. John said that the Bulldogs could not have pulled off the win without stellar performances from junior midfielder Mary Allen and senior midfielder Rachael Melendez.

"Allen and Melendez were essential in this win," St. John said. "They dominated the midfield."

The victory was bittersweet for St. John, who enjoyed a successful career as a four-year starter at Purdue.

"I am a better person and coach for having been a part of Coach Rob Klatte's program," St. John said. "This is bittersweet, but I am incredibly happy for our team."

Butler will look to continue its winning ways when it hosts UT-Martin Sunday, Sept. 1 at the Butler Bowl at 1 p.m.

"It is important to back this win up with another good performance on Sunday," St. John said. "Good teams are consistent."