WEST POINT, N.Y. – The University of Iowa women’s soccer team continued its pursuit of the best start in program history, routing LIU Brooklyn Sunday afternoon. Iowa (8-0-0) defeated the Blackbirds (1-5-0), 4-0, at Clinton Field in the final contest of the Black Knight Classic.
Three first half goals lifted the Hawkeyes, who currently sit atop the Big Ten standings, to another decisive win as Iowa collected its fifth shutout victory of the season. Iowa has opened with eight consecutive victories for the second straight season, and is off to the second best start in program history.
Sophomores Anne Marie Thomas, Cloe Lacasse (2) and Katie Nasenbenny each scored goals in the Hawkeye victory. Goalkeepers Meg Goodson, Hannah Clark and Kiley Beck earned the combined shutout.
“The team that took the field for us played its most consistent match of the season from beginning to end,” said head coach Ron Rainey. “I’m real proud of how we were able to play everyone on the roster. Everyone got great reps and we continued to limit their chances.”
Iowa would break through in the 18th minute as Thomas scored the first goal of her career. The strike was assisted by sophomore Melanie Pickert and senior Jade Grimm. Thomas, a native of Kenilworth, Ill., has started every game this season.
The Hawkeyes would keep their foot on the pedal, taking a 2-0 advantage less than one minute later. Lacasse beat LIU Brooklyn goalkeeper Jennifer Bannon on a shot from just inside the 18-yard box that dipped beneath the crossbar. The goal was assisted by junior Ashley Catrell and Nasenbenny.
Lacasse tallied another goal in the 39th minute as a great pass by senior Stefani Campbell put Lacasse behind the defense in a one-on-one situation. The Sudbury, Ontario, native didn’t disappoint, scoring the 22nd goal of her career.
Goodson started in goal for Iowa, improving her record to 3-0-0. The Van Meter, Iowa, native notched two saves and kept the Blackbirds off the scoreboard, while Clark started the second half in goal. Iowa outshot LIU Brooklyn 10-5 in the first half. Iowa hasn’t been tied or trailed after the first 45 minutes in each match this season, and has outscored its opponents 16-0 in the first half.
“It was good to see us get off to a good start and score goals each half,” said Rainey. “Everybody that stepped up for us played with confidence.”
Iowa scored the final goal of the match in the 64th minute as Nasenbenny scored the eighth goal of her career, and third this season. Nasenbenny, from LeGrange, Ill., scored from the right side of the six-yard box, putting her shut to the lower left corner. The goal was assisted by sophomore Nicole Urban.
Beck entered the game in the 66th minute in goal, and would record one save en route to preserving the Hawkeye shutout.
The Hawkeyes outshot the Blackbirds 14-9 with a 7-3 advantage in shots on goal and a 2-1 advantage in corner kicks.
“We wanted to play a complete game, and I think we got that today,” said Rainey. “The flow of the game was still there every time we subbed new players in, and it actually improved quite a few times throughout the game. It was a good team win, and now we are really looking forward to our match with Saint Louis.”
Iowa improved its nonconference win streak to 17 matches, outscoring their opponents by a total of 60 goals in that stretch. Iowa has outscored their opponents 27-3 this season.
The Hawkeyes will return to action on Wednesday, concluding nonconference play against Saint Louis. Iowa will play at Saint Louis at 5 p.m.