Soccer Shuts Out Eastern Kentucky 3-0 in Season-Opener

LAWRENCE, Kan. – For the third year in a row Kansas soccer recorded in a win in the season-opener with the latest a 3-0 victory over Eastern Kentucky (1-2) Friday afternoon, at the Jayhawk Soccer complex.
KU (1-0) absolutely dominated its opponent, outshooting the Colonels 20-6. Caitlin Noble, Caroline Kastor and Whitney Berry all netted goals for KU with Berry taking a game-high five shots with two on goal.

In her Jayhawk debut, Kastor led the scoring effort collecting three points. The freshman forward out of Wichita scored in the 41st minute and assisted on Berry’s second-half goal. Kastor’s three-point performance was the best freshman debut since Emily Cressy’s in 2008. Cressy also tallied a goal and an assist for three points.

Kansas’ defense limited the Colonels to just a pair of shots on goal while goalkeeper Kat Liebetrau collected two saves to start off her sophomore campaign with a win.

Just 30 seconds in, EKU’s Heather Bruce got a shot off but the Jayhawks then quickly took control. The Jayhawks effectively kept the ball on EKU’s side of the field and did not allow another Colonel shot in the first half.

In the 14th minute Noble flicked in an Erin Lewis corner kick to give the Jayhawks their first goal of the 2010 season. Lewis’ assist was the first since her freshman year in 2007.

KU once again took advantage of a corner kick right before the end of the period, when Erin Ellefson found Kastor at the top of the box to put KU up 2-0.

Coming into the second period with a 2-0 lead, KU continued to pound the Colonel defense. EKU fought back early on with two opportunities, but Liebetrau eliminated the threat.

Just 11 minutes in, Berry blasted a shot from 22 yards out to give the Jayhawks a final 3-0 lead.

The Jayhawks will now head out on a five-match road stretch, beginning Sunday with Georgia (1-1).

Postgame Quotes
Kansas 3, Eastern Kentucky 0
Lawrence, Kan. – Aug. 27, 2010

Kansas Head Coach Mark Francis
On today’s performance:
“I thought it was good. I thought the first half was better than the second half. We were able to play a lot of people; we made a lot of subs and got a lot of people into the game, which was good because it kept us fresh. I think for today that was good, but also going into the game on Sunday that will help us. I thought in the back we looked pretty solid. They had two shots on goal but I thought we did a good job of limiting them to not really too many scoring opportunities. At the other end of the field, I think we created a lot of chances. We had eight shots on goal and there were a couple others that we probably should have done a little better with. I thought some of the stuff we did on the attacking end was pretty good. I thought we had some good performances from a lot of people, so that was encouraging for the first game.

On Sunday’s game against Georgia:
“Defensively, on balls in the air that were served from the goalkeeper or clearances, there were a lot of them that went over our midfielders and bounced between our midfielders and our defenders. We need to do a better job. You don’t want the ball bouncing, especially in your defensive third of the field. We really have to do a better job of attacking those. In the attacking third (of the Friday game), we were in a little bit of a hurry. I think we forced it a little bit (in the second half).

On 20 shots, including eight on goal:
“We created a lot of offense today. If you have 20 shots, you would hope to score more than three goals. Eight on goal is quite a lot, too. You probably would hope to score more than three goals. Maybe we need to be a little more clinical. You aren’t always going to get that many opportunities. Today I thought we did a good job of creating a lot of chances but we need to be a little more clinical.”

Senior defender Caitlin Noble
On her goal:
“Yesterday we got our set pieces and we were practicing them. Each time I would connect with the ball it would go way wide. I said, ‘Don’t worry guys. I’m just saving it for the game tomorrow.’ Then I get up there and everybody was like, ‘Come on, Noble!’ It was just one of those things. The ball was perfect and I knew what to do. It was just perfect.”

On the atmosphere at Friday’s match:
“I loved it. It’s a totally different atmosphere. I’ve never seen that many people here. I felt like it was a Missouri game. Every time when you start to get tired, you hear the drums, you hear the chants. When there are other people there just as hyped up about what you’re doing it makes you feel better about doing it. The whole atmosphere makes it so much more enjoyable to play. It’s really fun to get a lot of people out here to support us.”