EWU women’s soccer take down Portland State, advance to Big Sky championship


EWU women’s soccer won 2-1 on Friday to advance to the conference championship game. They will play Northern Colorado for the title on Sunday. Photo courtesy of EWU Soccer.

By Jeremy Burnham, Reporter


The EWU women’s soccer team beat Portland State University 2-1 on Friday to advance to the Big Sky Conference championship game. They will play Northern Colorado University on Sunday, Nov. 5 for the title.

Less than 30 seconds into the game, senior forward Chloe Williams had EWU’s first shot on goal. Devan Talley took the ball at midfield and found Williams streaking to the net. She stayed onside, dribbled past a defender, and fired the shot on goal. PSU goalkeeper Abbie Faingold made the save. It would be first of three saves against Williams she would have in the first half.

While Williams was held without a goal on Friday, she picked up an assist in the seventh minute of the game. Williams sent a corner kick across the field in front of the net. Junior midfielder Jenny Chavez headed the ball past Faingold, and the Eagles took a 1-0 lead.

Faingold allowed two goals in the game, and they both came off of corner kicks. In the second half, Brooke Dunbar headed in a corner kick by Emma Vandehyden.

Shortly after the Eagle’s second goal, snow started to fall. PSU was faced with the challenge of attempting a two goal comeback on a snow covered field. PSU did get on the board with a goal by Tea Poore. The goal was the first that EWU senior goalkeeper Emily Busselman allowed at home against a BSC team all season.

The Eagles were able to tighten up on defense after that as they held on for the victory.

EWU head coach Chad Bodnar was glad his team took the 2-0 lead before the snow started to fall.

“I thought we played really well in the first 15 to 20 minutes of the game and we scored our first goal, but then we sat off for a little bit to let Portland State back into the game,” Bodnar said. “In the second half we came out and played well to earn the second goal, and then it decided to be winter on us. I have quite a few kids who have never played in [the snow] before and we could tell. We were slipping around.”

Sunday’s game is against a NCU team who lost to the Eagles 2-0 on Oct. 8. That game was in Colorado. EWU outshot NCU 15-8. Since then, however, Northern Colorado is undefeated. In their six games since playing EWU, they have four wins and two ties and have only allowed two goals those six games.

In regular season conference play, NCU was tied for first place in goals allowed, but also tied for last place in goals scored. EWU was tied for first place in both of those statistics.

More than the conference championship will be on the line on Sunday. The winner also advances to the NCAA national tournament. Williams, and her nine senior teammates, will be trying to extend their careers with a victory. If they lose, their season comes to an end.

The game is Sunday, Nov. 5 at noon. Admission is free for college students.

The Easterner predicts: This match is between the top two defenses in the conference. The offense who cracks their opponent’s defense first will win this game. EWU has more weapons who are capable of doing this. The Easterner expects EWU to win in a low scoring game.