Grace women’s soccer starts season with big win

DES MOINES, Iowa – The 2018 season for Grace’s women’s soccer team started on a high note with a 3-0 win over Grand View on Friday.

Three different players scored for the Lady Lancers in a convincing road performance.

Grace was aggressive from the opening kickoff in their season debut. The Lady Lancers outshot the Vikings 11-2 before halftime, picking up a pair of goals in the process.

The first goal of the year was scored less than 15 minutes into the match. Shelby Fort received a pass at the top of the penalty box. She deked her way around two defenders and buried her shot just under the crossbar.

Less than 15 minutes later, the Lady Lancers doubled their lead. Kristen Bellinger won possession for Grace in the attacking third. She played a nifty give-and-go pass with Corinne Villalobos to make her way into the box, and Bellinger proceeded to blast a low shot inside the near post at the 28:54 mark.

The shots continued to fly in the first half for Grace, forcing the Vikings to make five saves. Grand View went into halftime behind 2-0.

The third goal of the night was also the first career goal from freshman Baylei Peters. In the 70th minute, Peters took advantage of a defensive miscue by Grand View, calming slotting her shot into the net for the final tally.

Bethany Blackwood, playing her first collegiate match as the team’s goalkeeper, picked up her first collegiate shutout. She made three saves in 90 minutes, protected well by the backline of Anna Kuhl, Aubrey Feipel, Clair Snodgrass and Liz Aalbue.

Liz Van Wormer led all players with four shots, and Bellinger and Fort each had three.

Brooke Kohler, Sarah Casteel and Cassidy Wasson also made their debuts for the Lady Lancers on Friday.

The Lady Lancers will end their Iowa trip on Saturday with an 8 p.m. match against Graceland.