03 Oct Turner’s Hat Trick Sends Blue Demons to First BIG EAST Win
CHICAGO – DePaul women’s soccer claimed its first BIG EAST win of the 2021 season behind three first-half Morgan Turner goals. The Blue Demons were able to hold off the visiting Villanova Wildcats, sealing a 3-2 win.
With the Blue Demons on the attack from the get-go, Turner found the back of the net three times in the game’s first 30 minutes. Turner now has 29 goals in her DePaul career and has moved into the top-five of all-time goal scorers in program history. The Blue Demon forward now sits in fourth-place in the all-time ranks.
“I’m really proud of our team for coming out strong in the first half,” said head coach Michele O’Brien. “Everything we have been training, along with the attacking mentality, really came together in the first half.”
Just before the 10-minute mark, Turner fed Kristin Boos on the attack and made a run towards the front of the net. Boos threaded a pass into the box that Turner was able to knock in to get DePaul on the board. The goal was the first for the Blue Demons in conference play this season and gave the home side the momentum in the early going.
15 minutes later, Olivia Cooke found Turner in the box again. Turner slotted a goal that found its way across the goal line after deflecting off both the keeper and the cross bar. The strike in the 24th minute doubled the Blue Demon advantage and DePaul kept its foot on the gas.
In the 30th minute, Turner intercepted a pass on the right wing and outran a Wildcat defender on her way to the goal. Turner sped into her final touch and slid a low shot into the bottom left corner, making the score 3-0 and completing the first-half hat trick.
With a 3-0 scoreline at the break, Villanova mounted a rally coming out of halftime to climb back into the match. A Niki Molina goal in the 52nd minute cut into the Blue Demon lead.
“To go up three goals in a BIG EAST match is always exciting,” said O’Brien. “The game was a tale of two halves, though. We did not come out with the same energy and speed of play that we had in the first half and Villanova was able to get back in the game.”
The Wildcats scored again in the 79th minute on a Lauren Belcuore goal on a perfect service by Lauren Ashman. A match that was dominated by the Blue Demons early on, was now in the balance with DePaul clinging to a one-goal advantage. The Blue Demons dug in, defending the lead until the final whistle to claim the BIG EAST win.
“It was a good learning experience to realize how disciplined you need to be for 90 minutes,” said O’Brien. “I’m happy we got the win and three points. We will be ready for a good Seton Hall team on Thursday.”
- The BIG EAST win was the first of head coach Michele O’Brien‘s career. The Blue Demons now hold a 1-2 conference record.
- Turner now sits only behind Elise Wyatt (35), Franny Cerny (33) and Julianne Stich (32) with 29 career goals. The Blue Demon graduate student now has two career hat tricks after scoring three goals versus UMass Lowell back in 2018.
- Turner has now scored multiple goals in a pair of matches this season. Turner, who’s up to a team-high seven goals this season, scored twice in DePaul’s win over UIC on Aug. 29. Turner fired off a career-high ten shots in Saturday’s win.
- The Blue Demons outshot the Wildcats 19-5 in the win while also tallying nine corners to Villanova’s three.
DePaul heads to South Orange, N.J. to take on Seton Hall on Thursday. First touch versus the Pirates is scheduled for 5 p.m. CT and the match will be broadcast on the BIG EAST Digital Network on FloSports presented by SoFi.
For all of the latest on DePaul Women’s Soccer, stay tuned to depaulbluedemons.com and follow the team on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.
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