Pirates Edge Puget Sound to Keep Hold of First Place

Pirates Edge Puget Sound to Keep Hold of First Place

SPOKANE, Wash. – Tiara Pajimola's goal in the 56th minute lifted Whitworth to a 1-0 win over visiting Puget Sound in a key Northwest Conference women's soccer match on Sunday afternoon.

The Pirates improved to 6-4-1 overall and 6-0-1 in the NWC (19 points), more than a game ahead of the ten-time defending league champion Loggers (5-3-1, 4-1-1 / 13 points).

Pajimola took a pass from Katrin Grant and worked around two defenders before rolling the ball under Puget Sound keeper Kara Merfeld for her sixth goal of the season.

"Tiara's goal came on an excellent assist by Katrin," said Whitworth head coach Jael Hagerott. "She pressed the defender, won the ball, and played a beautiful ball to Tiara and she did what she has been doing for us all season, finishing."

Andrea Stump made five saves in goal for Whitworth to help the Pirates post their sixth clean sheet in seven conference matches.

Puget Sound finished with a 12-7 edge in overall shots, but only a 5-4 advantage in shots on goal.  The Loggers had five corner kicks, including three after Whitworth had taken the lead.

"UPS is always a tough, quality opponent and the game was a battle," Hagerott said. "Everybody who stepped on the field for us today played very well. Andrea (Stump) and our back line were composed and came up big when needed. Our midfielders put out the work that was needed and our strikers were able to put pressure on the UPS backline."

Whitworth will head to McMinnville, Oregon to face Linfield next weekend.