Colonials off to fast start in A-10 this season

By DailyCollegian.com Staff

Courtesy of George Washington Media Relations
Alex Neal of the George Washington women’s soccer team has been named the Atlantic 10 Women’s Soccer Rookie of the Week for the second time this season.

The freshman scored both goals in a 2-1 victory against Temple, including her second game-winner of the season in the 44th minute, right before halftime. Later in the week, the defender/midfielder made contributions in the Colonials’ 2-1 victory over Saint Joseph’s, helping boost the team’s conference record to 2-0.

The perfect start in conference play leaves GW in a three-way tie for first place with juggernauts Dayton and Charlotte.

Neal received her first Rookie of the Week award on Sept. 20 when she led the Colonials to three victories and scored her first collegiate goal against Delaware.

GW began the season playing poorly, as it lost three of its first five matches. Since then, the Colonials, sparked by Neal’s play off the bench, have won six games in a row. GW missed the playoffs last season and finished at an unimpressive 7-8-4 clip in the conference.

The Colonials (8-3, 2-0 A-10) face Richmond this week as they look to continue their first winning season since 2003.

Players of the week

Richmond’s Becca Wann and Dayton’s Colleen Williams were named the A-10 Conference Women’s Soccer Co-Players of the Week.

Wann’s late game heroics propelled the Spiders to an overtime win against the Hawks. With 17 seconds remaining in the extra period, Wann delivered the golden goal to secure Richmond’s first conference victory. The game was sent into overtime thanks to Wann’s header in the 87th minute.

Wann notched her third goal of the week in a 1-1 tie with Temple. The freshman has put up gaudy numbers thus far, scoring seven of her team’s nine goals. Richmond (4-5-2, 1-0-1 A-10) takes on George Washington this Saturday.

Williams, meanwhile, also scored three goals in wins against Fordham and La Salle last week. The reigning A-10 Rookie of the Year kicked her week off with a goal in the Flyers 4-0 blowout of the Rams. Later in the week, Williams had both goals in a 2-0 victory over the Explorers.

The sophomore from Titusville, N.J. has already been recognized as a Player of the Week three times this year. Williams leads both the Flyers (10-2, 2-0 A-10) and the conference in scoring with 11 goals. Dayton will rely heavily on Williams if they expect to defend their 2009 A-10 crown this season.

URI wins first game

Rhode Island won 1-0 over conference foe Saint Louis on Friday, giving the team their first victory of the season.

Senior forward Adrienne Ruhe Lischke delivered the game-winner in the second half with less than 27 minutes remaining in regulation. After receiving a pass from Alexis Veith, Ruhe Lischke dribbled uncontested into the box and blasted a shot into the top-left side of the net.

Although the Rams (1-8-1, 1-1-0 A-10) have struggled to find the win column this year, they have managed to stay competitive in nearly every game. Six of their eight loses have been by one goal.

Part of URI’s struggles can be attributed to a severe lack of scoring. Through their first 10 games, the Rams have only scored seven goals; which puts them second to last in scoring in the A-10, just ahead of the Billikens.

Rhode Island faces a huge challenge Friday when it travels to Dayton to take on the Flyers.

Jackson Alexander can be reached at [email protected]