PORTLAND, Ore. – Northern Arizona University women's soccer sealed their first win of the conference season this afternoon (Sept. 27) thanks to two goals from junior forward Lindsay Doyle. The Lumberjacks posted their sixth win of the season, and their third come-from-behind victory, moving to 6-5-0 and 1-1-0 in the Big Sky. Northern Arizona avoided their second overtime game of the weekend scoring in the 86th minute despite being down 1-0 at halftime.
"I thought we responded really well after Friday's loss," Head Coach Andre Luciano said. "We could have easily crumbled but we remained positive and got the job done."
A lot of time was spent in Viking territory to open up the first half of play in Portland, Ore. Northern Arizona created two prime opportunities to score with shots from Doyle and sophomore forward Adrian Nixt within the first 15 minutes. PSU had just one opportunity to score after just over 20 minutes in the first period, but capitalized on its third attempt to take the 1-0 lead in the 29th minute. The Lumberjacks would get two more clean looks immediately following PSU's goal, one of which hit the cross bar off a pass right on the money to Nixt from senior defender Emily Wadell.
Aside from Portland State's one goal in the first half, the two squads were pretty much dead even in every other statistic with five shots and three saves apiece, and NAU having one corner kick opportunity to PSU's nil. Sophomore goalkeeper Meghan Dickmann earned her third start of the season and increased her career saves total to 19 on the year with four on the afternoon. The Vikings would come up with a shot to open the second period, but the Lumberjacks' back line was able to come up with a big save. Fifteen minutes in, off a dime from senior forward Haley Wingender who received the pass from Cierra Gamble, Doyle rolled one in to the right corner past PSU's goalkeeper to tie up the game at 1-1.
"I told them at halftime we had to keep playing the way we were playing, and we did exactly that," Luciano said. "I'm really proud of Lindsay Doyle and her two goals."
NAU was able to hold off an attacking PSU offense the remainder of the second half. The Vikings held a slight edge over Northern Arizona in terms of shot attempts with 10 to the Lumberjacks' eight, but both squads posted five shots on goal after 83 minutes of play. With four minutes to go, Doyle came up big yet again off a Missy Kettelkamp assist and found the back of the net to give the Lumberjacks a 2-1 lead and their first win of the conference season. Doyle now has three goals after 11 games in 2015, just one shy of her season best four goals in the 2013 campaign.
The Lumberjacks' next game will be at the University of Montana on Sunday, Oct. 4 and they will return to Flagstaff, Ariz. the following weekend to face Northern Colorado and North Dakota on Oct. 9 and Oct. 11 respectively.