Jenny Hipp dazzles offensively in UMass’ win over Eastern Michigan

Hipp scores two goals and adds three assists in 6-1 victory

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(Katherine Mayo/Daily Collegian)

By Noah Bortle, Collegian Staff

The Massachusetts women’s soccer team secured its fourth straight victory on Sunday, beating Eastern Michigan 6-1 behind two goals and three assists from Jenny Hipp.

Hipp’s offensive creativity proved pivotal for the Minutewomen (5-2-0) in breaking down the Eagles’ (5-4-0) defense en route to six goals as a team.

“She’s a really talented player,” said coach Jason Dowiak on Hipp. “A really tactically aware player.”

Though Hipp netted two goals on Sunday, her most prolific play came in the 48th minute. With the ball near midfield, Hipp had the vision to play the ball over the top to Erin Doster, making a run behind the Eastern Michigan defense, who ripped a shot into the back netting to put the Minutewomen on top 2-0.

“Eastern Michigan had a moment of pause and Jenny took advantage of it,” Dowiak said. “She’s so capable of delivering the ball in so many different ways. It was a well-timed run by Erin, but when you get a ball like that, it’s pretty easy to tell when it’s time to go.”

The goal helped jumpstart a UMass offense that was only ahead 1-0 coming out of halftime.

“I knew we had to score early in the second half to just kind of close the game out,” Hipp said. “I had a lot of space and I saw Doster making the run and I played the ball to her and hoped she would finish it and she did an amazing job finishing it.”

“I took advantage of their line being really disorganized and Jenny played a really good ball behind,” Doster added.

Hipp opened the game’s scoring in the 25th minute after a ball played across the middle by Julia Taffuri fell to her feet from six yards out and she calmly tapped it into the bottom right corner of the net.

The goal energized the Minutewomen who controlled most of the game after that, only surrendering one goal to the Eagles in the 73rd minute.

“We talked a lot this week about making a bigger impact on the game,” Dowiak said of Hipp’s performance.

Hipp tacked on her second goal of the afternoon in the 51st minute when Rebeca Frisk laid off a through ball with her back heel, setting up Hipp one-on-one with Eagles goalkeeper Kaylin Williams before burying a low shot off the left post.

“It was the epitome of what we are trying to see, that decision-making and creativity,” Dowiak said.

Hipp rounded out her already stellar stat line late in the game, adding two more assists to bring her total on the afternoon to three to go along with the two goals.

“All of the forwards that played ahead of her were able to find her because her movement was so good, and she is on another level when she is able to connect those passes,” Dowiak said.

Hipp came into the game with only one goal and two assists through six games but seems to be settling into form nicely, more than doubling her count in each category.

“I think today I got on the ball more,” Hipp said. “I had good movement today in between the lines, and that’s what coach told me to do. I just moved between the lines and then I would get on the ball and get my chances.”

If Sunday’s game is any indication, Hipp could be a difference-maker moving forward as UMass moves into conference play this week with a matchup against Duquesne at home.

Noah Bortle can be reached at [email protected] and followed on Twitter @noah_bortle.