Two first half goals from senior Madeleine Chilcote gave the Kalamazoo College Women’s Soccer team an early lead that proved to be enough for the team to clinch the MIAA regular season championship.
Chilcote then assisted fellow senior Emma Tardiff early in the second half to extend the Hornets’ lead to 3-0 before a late goal from Olivet ended the shutout bid.
The win and the team’s win against Hope earlier this season gave the Hornets the tie breaker over Hope with the two teams ending conference play with identical records.
Not only were all three goals scored by and assisted by seniors on Monday, but for the first time all season all nine of the team’s seniors were in the starting eleven.
Contributions from seniors have been a big part of the team’s success this season, the nine seniors scored 26 goals, assisted on 22 of the team’s goals, and senior goalie Grace Smith recorded 5 shutouts to go along with a goals-against-average under one goal per game.
“It feels great to be conference champions” said senior Suzanne Miller. “We’ve been working towards this all season one game at a time, and when the last whistle blew it was definitely a euphoric feeling.”
While the Hornets are thrilled with this accomplishment, they still have more they hope to accomplish with the MIAA tournament this week, and a bid for the NCAA tournament on the line.
“It’s a great feeling right now, but at the same time we’ve got a lot more we want to accomplish” said senior Paige Sambor.
With wins against all three other teams in the tournament, the Hornets are confident that they can continue this season’s success on the bigger stage.
“The conference tournament is going to be tough” senior Sydney Spring said. “But we know that we can play with the other top teams in the conference.”
The conference championship is the Hornets’ first since the 1999 season
As conference champions, the Hornets earned the right to host the first round of the conference tournament tomorrow night at MacKenzie Field at 7:00 p.m. against Alma.