MILWAUKEE — Milwaukee defeated Illinois State 3-0 Saturday evening at Engelmann Stadium in the opening round of the NCAA tournament. The Panthers limited ISU to just five shots on goal, as the Redbirds were shutout for just the fourth time this season.
Milwaukee (19-2-0) entered the match as the nation’s sixth-highest scoring team at 2.70 goals per game and netted its first goal less than four minutes into the contest. Sarah Hagen finished a corner kick service from Keara Thompson for her 25th tally of the season to give Milwaukee a 1-0 lead.
Illinois State (13-6-0) was forced to defend for much of the early part of the first half, but began to mount an offensive attack of its own and created chances late in the stanza. Freshman Rachel Tejada headed a service from senior Alex Howell just wide of the near post, and a cross from sophomore Anna Stinson sailed just over the head of fellow sophomore Kyla Cross, who was unmarked on the back post, in the final minutes of the opening stanza.
The Panthers outshot ISU, 8-6, in the first 45 minutes and took a 1-0 advantage into the locker room.
The Redbirds opened the second half with a strong offensive attack and earned two quick corner kicks in the first minute of play, but could not find the equalizer. The two teams played even more much of the second half, until the Panthers pushed forward and added an insurance goal in the 74th minute.
Redshirt freshman goalkeeper Aryn Newsom made a diving save to keep Hagen off the score sheet for the second time on a blast to the far post, but Krissy Dorre was able to collect the rebound and find the back of the net to double Milwaukee’s lead.
Milwaukee added its final goal in the 85th minute, when Thompson finished a pass from Morgan LaPlant to cap the scoring.
Senior Jessica Carlson led ISU offensively with five shots and Newsom collected four saves in loss, to drop her record to 11-5-0. For the match, Illinois State finished with an 8-4 advantage in corner kicks, but were outshot, 18-17.