March 2, 2013
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. - The Alabama soccer team opened the spring season with a convincing, 5-0, victory over the University of Montevallo on a chilly night at the Alabama Soccer Stadium Friday night.
Southeastern Conference Freshman of the Year, Merel Van Dongen opened up the scoring in the fifth minute. Van Dongen received a cross from early enrollee Auburn Mercer in the box and beat the keeper in the lower right corner.
In the 14th minute, Mercer continued to make an immediate impact making a blazing run onto a through ball from Freshman All-SEC forward Katie Bourgeois . As she reached the 18-yard box, she was brought down from behind and the Tide was awarded a penalty kick. Van Dongen stepped up and buried the PK to make it 2-0.
Alabama took the lead into the half and reopened the scoring in the 53rd minute. Spring addition Danielle Herubin made the most of her first collegiate action by getting on the end of another cross from Bourgeois to make the score 3-0. The All-SEC Dutch tandem connected in the 56th minute as Pia Rijsdijk finished a through ball from van Dongen.
Rijsdijk finished off the scoring for the night in the 72nd minute, finishing a cross from Janea Simpson to make the score 5-0. Simpson, the Tuscaloosa native, made her return to the pitch after being sidelined with a torn ACL last season. Freshman goalkeeper Emily Rusk, Sophomore Laura Lee Smith and early enrollee Jordan Meier played the full 90 minutes to help preserve the shutout for the Tide.
Alabama returns to action Saturday, March 9 against Memphis at the Alabama Soccer Stadium. Kickoff is at 11am.