SPOKANE, Wash. – Tiara Pajimola scored the first goal and assisted the winner to lead Whitworth to a 2-1 win over visiting George Fox, keeping the Pirates tied atop the Northwest Conference women's soccer standings.
Whitworth improved to 9-5-2 overall and 9-1-2 (29 points) in the NWC, tied with Linfield for first place. George Fox fell to 2-12-2, 1-11.
Mackenzie Grow found Pajimola sprinting up the middle of the field and delivered a perfect pass near the top of the 18-yard box. Pajimola then beat Bruin keeper Ally Swanson with a low shot for her eighth goal of the season in the 24th minute.
Despite holding only a one-goal lead the Pirates appeared in control most of the way through the second half. But Alicia Wong gave George Fox a boost when she hit the cross bar with a shot in the 61st minute.
Wong was then able to tie the match in the 77th minute. Esther Harder fired a hard shot from the right side that was saved by Whitworth keeper Andrea Stump. But Wong was in the right position for a put-back goal, her first of the season.
Pajimola set up Whitworth's winning goal when she crossed to a wide-open Hannah Bokma in the middle of the box. Bokma chipped the pass over Swanson in the 82nd minute for her third goal of the season. All three of her goals have been match-winners.
"Hannah's three game-winning goals are a tribute to the great soccer that she has been playing lately," said Whitworth head coach Jael Hagerott. "It was a beautiful ball by Tiara, and Hannah sold out to get on the end of it."
Whitworth finished with a 19-8 edge in overall shots, including an 11-3 advantage in shots on-goal. The Pirates took five corner kicks to George Fox's one.
Whitworth will hit the road for two key NWC matches next weekend, taking on Willamette on Saturday and Lewis & Clark on Sunday. Hagerott is optimistic her team is ready for that challenge.
"From the GK/back line to up front, the team has been playing very well," Hagerott said. "The girls are moving the ball around the field which has allowed us to create scoring opportunities...thankfully we have scored one more goal than our opponent."