FORT MYERS, Fla. – Three goals and a strong defensive effort led the way as the FGCU women’s soccer team earned a 3-0 shutout victory against FIU at the FGCU Soccer Complex on Sunday afternoon.
The Eagles’ defense was stellar in the win as they were able to shut down the defending Sun Belt Conference champions. Freshman Shannen Wacker (Parker, Colo./Ponderosa HS) scored two early first half goals to pace the Green and Blue’s offensive attack, while junior Jessica Swartzentruber (Sarasota, Fla./Sarasota Christian) added the final goal in the win.
“I am really pleased with our performance,” said FGCU head coach Jim Blankenship. “I love the fact that we came out and set the tone early with two early goals from Shannen Wacker. This group continues to work hard and be relentless in its attack on offense.”
Freshman goalkeeper Danielle Leroy (Tampa, Fla./H.B. Plant HS) made three saves to pick up the shutout win. Junior defender Jennifer Crittenberger (Lighthouse Point, Fla./Cardinal Gibbons HS) anchored the backline that continues to be the staple of the FGCU women’s soccer program.
“Our backline continues to gain more confidence this spring,” Blankenship stated. “Danielle was great in net for us with Crittenberger and Melissa Arnold stepping up on defense again”
Last week, FGCU fell 1-0 to the U-17 USA National team after allowing a penalty kick for the game winner. The Eagles will continue its spring season on Sunday, March 18 at 3 p.m. when they travel to Orlando to take on UCF who made it to the Elite 8 at the NCAA Tournament last season.
FGCU women’s soccer team ended the 2011 campaign with a program-best 14-5-2 overall record and an impressive 7-1-1 A-Sun mark, claiming back-to-back A-Sun regular season titles and earning their first-ever A-Sun tournament championship. FGCU won the championship off a dramatic goal in double-overtime sending the Eagles into the NCAA Championship for the first time in program history. Setting a new school record for shutouts with 12 on the season, the Green and Blue also landed five All-Conference first team selections and a pair of second team and All-Freshmen picks.