Oct. 14, 2011
CHICAGO, Ill. - Junior forward Heidi Sabatura (Lawrenceville, N.J.) scored her second straight game-winning goal with less than five minutes to play and senior forward Katie Ryan (Wayne, N.J.) tallied a pair of scores as Villanova (8-7-2, 4-5 BIG EAST) beat DePaul (3-12-1, 1-7-1 BIG EAST) by a final count of 3-2 at Wish Field on Friday afternoon.
The fourth win in the last five games for the Wildcats moves the team one step closer to locking up a spot in the BIG EAST Championship later this month. Villanova moved into a tie for fourth place in the National Division conference standings thanks to winning its first league road game of the season.
On two occasions during the game - early in each half - Ryan pushed the Wildcats into the lead with her 10th and 11th goals of the season. The score was tied 2-2, however, when Sabatura found the back of the net from 10 yards out with 4:37 to play and delivered her sixth career game-winning goal. Senior midfielder Katy Nagy (Bellmore, N.Y.) set up the play with a feed to Sabatura and from there Villanova secured the final outcome.
Earlier in the period, Ryan won a ball away from the Blue Demons defense and shot to the left side of the net less than four minutes into the second half to give the Wildcats a 2-1 lead. The advantage lasted for barely a minute, however, as DePaul received a goal from Morgan Celaya just 73 seconds later to knot the score at 2-2.
Villanova had an 8-3 edge in shots on goal for the game, including a 6-2 margin in the pivotal second half. Both goals scored by the Blue Demons came in a span of less than six minutes, although they were bridged by halftime. The first DePaul goal was scored by Natasa Radosavljevic just 53 seconds before the end of the first half.
Ryan got the Wildcats on the scoreboard in the 11th minute, when she took a pass from redshirt freshman midfielder Stephanie Myers (Downingtown, Pa.) and beat Blue Demons goalkeeper Megan Pyrz one-on-one for the first score of the game. That goal came on the first shot of the day by either side.
With the score tied 2-2 late in the second half Villanova withstood two efforts by Radosavljevic to give DePaul the lead in a span of just over a minute. In the 82nd minute sophomore goalkeeper Jami Kranich (Hamden, Conn.) made her only save of the game on a shot by Radosavljevic with 8:46 to play and in the 83rd she became the second Blue Demons player of the game to hit the crossbar on her shot attempt with 7:23 left.
All ended well, though, when Sabatura had the final answer less than three minutes later.
Next up for the Wildcats is a 1 p.m. contest at Notre Dame on Sunday afternoon.
Villanova had lost its previous nine road games against BIG EAST opponents prior to today's win over DePaul ... The Wildcats improved to 4-0 all-time at Wish Field and tallied their fourth win by a one-goal margin at the venue ... With her two goals in today's game senior forward Katie Ryan (Wayne, N.J.) reached 100 career points ... She is the third Villanova player to accomplish this feat, joining Ann Brennan (1983-86) with 115 points and Cathy Ford (1983-85) with 112 points ... Junior forward Heidi Sabatura (Lawrenceville, N.J.) scored her sixth career game-winning goal, moving within one of entering the program's all-time top 10 ... Sabatura has three game-winners this year, with the previous two coming at Georgia State (Aug. 26) and at home last Sunday versus Cincinnati (Oct. 9) ... The top five teams out of eight in each BIG EAST division earn a spot in the conference tournament ... Two regular season games remain for the Wildcats, including Sunday's game at the Fighting Irish and next Friday on the road versus Georgetown.