Women’s soccer on a roll in Toronto

Gaels keep two clean sheets en route to six points

Jessie de Boer scored the game-winning goal against the University of Toronto.
Jessie de Boer scored the game-winning goal against the University of Toronto.

It’s been a while since the women’s soccer team has been beaten for a goal.

The Gaels (3-1-3) notched another pair of clean sheets this weekend, as fourth-year keeper Madison Tyrell kept both the Toronto Varsity Blues (5-2-1) and Ryerson Rams (2-4-2) from scoring in a pair of road victories.

With the wins, Queen’s has now gone four straight games without conceding a goal.

Tyrell’s play in net led the Gaels to a 1-0 victory over Toronto on Saturday, before the Gaels’ offence kicked it up a notch to prevail 3-0 over the Rams.

Queen’s moved into fifth place in the tightly-contested OUA East after the weekend, allowing them to keep pace with the league’s other playoff hopefuls.

“Our midfield has been very good at smothering things early,” head coach Dave McDowell said. “And Madi [Tyrell] has been there to help us out if anything gets through.”

McDowell added that the Gaels had a complete defensive performance against the Varsity Blues, allowing just a single shot on goal.

Midfielder Jessie de Boer put the Gaels ahead against Toronto with a 34th minute goal. The marker was de Boer’s third attempt during the play — after her first shot was blocked and her second hit the post. The goal was all Queen’s needed as they cruised to a victory.

The defence wasn’t as strong against the Rams, with Tyrell having to turn aside six shots on net.

“Ryerson was a wee bit more direct,” McDowell said. “It was the first time we’d seen it and it caused us a few anxious moments in terms of learning to deal with it.”

The Gaels offence was led by first-year forward Jenny Wolever. The rookie opened the scoring in the second minute of action and added a second-half goal to give the Gaels the 3-0 advantage. Third-year midfielder Laura Callender knocked in the other Queen’s goal of the game.

“It’s nice to score in the first minute — that just takes a little bit of pressure off you,” McDowell said. “I just think it was a terrific goal.”

With her pair against Ryerson, Wolever has a team-leading four goals on the season.

Now that the Gaels have won three straight games, McDowell is seeing a shift in how his squad has been playing in comparison to earlier in the campaign.

“I think our possession’s been better, I think we’re creating more chances,” he said. “And our goalkeeping and back four play has been much better.”

The Gaels kick off a five-game homestand this weekend when they host the UOIT Ridgebacks and Trent Excalibur on Saturday and Sunday. Both games take place at 1 p.m. on Miklas-McCarney Field.

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