JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Jacksonville University Dolphins women’s soccer fought back to earn a hard fought 1-1 draw Thursday night against the Eagles of Georgia Southern on Military Appreciation Night.
This result gave the Dolphins the honor of having a five-game unbeaten streak, the longest in the program’s history.
The first half belonged to the Eagles as they bossed the game and controlled a chunk of the possession, limiting the Dolphins chances. The game got interesting at the 33rd minute mark when the Eagles forced freshman goalkeeper Gretchen Duttenhofer into a much-needed save, halting a goal bound strike.
Seconds later the Eagles pinged a shot off the post, but it was in the 37th minute where the Eagles successfully breached the Dolphins’ defense.
A header off of a corner kick found the back of the net putting the Eagles up 1-0 going into the half.
In the second half, the Dolphins showed resiliency as the pace of the game picked up. Looking for the equalizer, they found it off of a corner kick when sophomore defender Hayley Friedl fired a missile in the top corner that the opposing goalkeeper had no chance of saving. This tying goal injected life into the Dolphins as they improved from their first half performance.
When speaking of her game tying goal, Friedl kept it simple.
“The ball ended up popping back out to me,” Friedl said with a smile on her face. “Instead of going for the cross, I decided to go for the shot, and it went in, so it paid off”.
Head Coach John Constable admitted it was a difficult first half, but he expected his team to react the way they did the second half.
“I’m proud of the fight they showed but I expect nothing less,” Constable said. “They give that every game. Win, lose or tie. I have a group of players that give absolutely everything for this program and that is big reason why we now have our best start in 27 years.”
Constable took over the program in March 2020 when the program had not won a single game in three years. Since his appointment, he’s credited the turnaround of the program to many things such as the players having a “never say die attitude” as well as instilling a different mindset into the players.
Constable and his squad will be returning home this Saturday, Sept. 10, at 2 p.m., against The Citadel.