By: Sean Neidig, sports information graduate assistant
HOLLAND, Mich. – Capital University Women's Soccer began its two-day trip to Michigan on Saturday with the toughest challenge on the early season, a trip to No. 15 Hope College. Unfortunately for the Crusaders, the first leg of their journey ended with a 3-1 defeat, Capital's first loss of the season.
The Flying Dutch struck first on a fast break just six minutes into the game. After winning a throw in its own end, Jaedyn Shelton delivered the ball to Abbey Przekop who dribbled up the right sideline. Przekop cut into Capital's defense before crossing it to Hilary Curry in the middle of the box. Curry calmly slotted the ball into the lower left-hand corner to put Hope ahead 1-0.
The second goal for Hope was the result of a corner by Eliza Beird. Just moments before the goal, Maria Egloff attempted a shot off of a free kick that was just pushed over the crossbar by Capital keeper Kelly Bachmann. However, the save gave Hope a corner. Beird sent the ball into the box and Megan Bigelow directed it over the Capital defense and looped it into the goal.
With 12 minutes to play until the half, Capital pulled one back with a goal on the counterattack. After controlling the ball in the middle of the pitch, Brooke Shutler led Jordan Fike down the middle of Hope's end with a pass from the center circle. The ball perfectly led Fike through Hope's defense and when Hope's keeper came out to challenge, the senior forward scooted it past her and into the net.
Hope controlled the pace of play for the entire first half with 15 shots to Capital's one.
The second half was much more even with neither team able to take complete control of play. With 13 minutes left, Capital had a quality chance to equalize but Amy Burt's shot was saved with a diving effort from Jordanne Ellingboe.
Just two minutes later, Hope added a third goal on the counter. A shot from Fike with 10 minutes to play forced another dive from Ellingboe and the keeper was able to get just enough on the strike to push it wide into the crossbar and out of bounds.
Bachmann made six saves on the day for Capital and Ellingboe made three.
Capital will have to regroup quickly before another match on Sunday afternoon. The Crusaders will make the two-hour drive to Albion College for a 2 p.m. game against the Britons looking to leave Michigan with a win.