Courtesy of Buffalo Sports Information Department
BUFFALO, NY - An aggressive attack right at the outset from the Buffalo women's soccer team overwhelmed rival Canisius Thursday evening, with two goals in the opening half proving to be enough for a 2-0 win. Katie Kerr had a goal and an assist while harassing the Canisius defense throughout, taking a team-high five shots in the game. As a team, the Bulls took 22 shots and put 14 on goal. Ainsley Wheldon made three saves to earn her first shutout of this early campaign.
The Bulls (1-1) jumped on the Griffs (0-3) early on thanks to Kerr, who took the ball up the wing and put a shot on goal. Canisius' Megan Tock made the save, but the rebound was settled easily by Katie Roberts, who put home the rebound for an early 1-0 advantage in the fourth minute of the game. The team would not let up, though, taking 14 shots total in the first 45 minutes alone and putting Tock to work with 11 of those put on goal.
"The biggest thing was that she (Kerr) brought energy and ran, and it's as simple as that," said head coach Michael Thomas. "Over the first 25 minutes, she covered more ground than anyone else on the team and then she was able to win some individual battles to get those shots up."
The second tally would come thanks to a more patient Kerr in the 35th minute. After taking the ball off a flick from Stephanie Velez and beating her defender to the inside, she quick-stopped and settled the ball before beating the goalie high right for a 2-0 lead. The goal was the senior forward's first of the season and the fourth of her career.
"My teammates made it really easy to find me down the line," Kerr said. "On my goal, I just wanted to keep my composure and not think about it too much and get it in the net. We knew we could exploit the outside, and we worked on it in practice and put it in play."
On defense, the Griffs could find no relief in the run of play, but found success on set plays to drum up its three total shots on goal. Wheldon made a pair of stellar saves off of headers in the box from corner kicks and was able to seal up her first shutout of the season and the 12th of her career.
The win will now lead into a three-game road trip over the next eight days. Next up will be another rivalry game against St. Bonaventure on Sunday at 1pm, followed by games at Youngstown State (8/28) and Bucknell (8/31).