MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – Senior midfielder Stefany Ferrer-vanGinkelscored a pair of goals to help the No. 6-ranked West Virginia University women’s soccer team to a 2-1 win over No. 11 Kansas on Friday night at Dick Dlesk Soccer Stadium in Morgantown.
Playing in front of fans at home for the first time this season, the Barcelona, Spain, native netted goals in the eighth and 16th minute, respectively, to lead the Mountaineers to their fifth consecutive victory. With the result, WVU improved to 4-0 at home and has now defeated a top-15 opponent in 15 of the last 16 seasons.
“I really thought the team came out with so much enthusiasm (in the first half), and they were so opportunistic to win this game,” WVU coach Nikki Izzo-Brown said. “You could feel it – you could just feel how hard they wanted to be successful.
“I thought the whole team really took it to Kansas in the first 45 minutes. Then, we had a couple more chances (in the second half) that I wish we could’ve finished, and, unfortunately, we didn’t get that clean sheet. That’s why Kansas is the No. 11 team in the country.”
WVU (7-1, 7-1 Big 12) was simply dominant in the first half of play, outshooting the visiting Jayhawks (4-3, 4-3 Big 12), 11-0, by halftime. Ferrer-vanGinkel’s first goal of the evening came in the eighth minute, when sophomore forward Enzi Broussard tip-toed around the end line and found the midfielder unmarked in the middle of the box for an easy goal to make it 1-0.
Just minutes later, the two connected again to push the Mountaineers’ advantage to two. Following a feed from Broussard, Ferrer-vanGinkel slashed through the box and beat the KU keeper for her team-leading sixth goal of the season. It also was good for her fourth game-winning goal of the campaign.
The two-goal performance was the first by a Mountaineer since Broussard registered a brace on Sept. 18, in WVU’s 4-1 win over Kansas State.
West Virginia continued to dictate play in the first half, before taking the two-goal lead into the locker room for halftime. From there, the match’s physicality and intensity picked up.
Much like the first 45 minutes, WVU’s offensive attack remained sharp, as it nearly added a third goal in the 53rd, when junior forward Alina Stahl’s shot was partially cleared off the line before Ferrer-vanGinkel’s attempt at a hat trick was saved by the KU keeper.
A few moments after Kansas recorded its first shot attempt of the night in the 69th minute, the Jayhawks cut the Mountaineers’ lead in half in the 75th following a corner kick. However, KU could draw no closer.
WVU went on to post a season-high 20 shots on the night, while it held the visitors to just four. The Mountaineers also held a 7-4 advantage in corner kicks.
Broussard paced the squad with six shots in the win, while redshirt junior forward Lauren Segalla added five more. The Mountaineers combined to put nine shots on frame, including four each by Broussard and Ferrer-vanGinkel.
In goal, sophomore goalkeeper Kayza Massey made one save and improved to 4-0 on the year.
With the win, WVU improved to 8-2-1 all-time against the Jayhawks, including 3-1 in Morgantown. It also marked the team’s 49th win in the last 50 games when scoring twice or more.
Next up, the Mountaineers will play for the Big 12 regular-season title at No. 4 TCU on Friday, Nov. 6. Kickoff at Garvey-Rosenthal Soccer Stadium in Fort Worth, Texas, is set for 8 p.m. ET, as WVU vies for its first conference regular-season crown since 2016.
“We know what’s at stake,” Izzo-Brown said. “We know that a championship is on the line, and that was a goal for this team.”
Credit: WVU Sports