Thursday night marked a rare occurrence for the Pitt women’s soccer team, as the Panthers were shut out for the first time this season and Pitt star Amanda West was stymied by VCU in the team’s 1-0 win over Pitt. The freshman forward has been a force since her arrival on campus, as she began her career with a hat trick and then extended that into a six-game point streak that lasted from Aug. 23 to Sept. 8.
So far this season, West has seven goals and three assists for a total of 17 points. West’s point total ranks fifth in the NCAA, and her seven goals rank sixth. In addition, the native of Burlington, Ontario, has come up with three game-winning goals, and that ranks fourth in the nation. In terms of goals, points and game-winners, she ranks among the top two players in the ACC, with the only comparable player in the conference being Virginia’s Diana Ordonez.
West’s point streak began with a four-game goal streak that was unprecedented in the program’s 23-year history. In addition, the point streak has placed her within striking distance of several program records. Specifically, West is within three goals of tying the program record for goals in a season, which was set in 1998, when Cande Ruiz scored 10 times. She is also nine points removed from tying the record for points in a season, another record held by Ruiz, who amassed 26 points in 1998.
”We have a saying on our team; it’s, ‘Do your job,’” West said after her hat trick. “As a forward, that’s my job, to score goals. So I’m just doing what I need to do.”
None of what West has done has caught Pitt head coach Randy Waldrum by surprise, as he described her as a “goal-scorer” and said that she would “have an immediate effect on the 2019 team” upon signing her as a recruit in 2018. More recently, Waldrum doubled down on his prediction regarding West in an interview with Ben Bobeck of the Pitt News.
“I think she’s going to be the lynchpin that’s going to kind of carry us through this season,” Waldrum said of West. “Next year with the recruiting class, we hope we get her some more help offensively, but I’d be shocked if her four-year career is not very steady like this.”
As for West, she views her contributions as one element of a sea change in the culture at Pitt, and she envisions the program making major strides in the coming months and years.
”It’s a new era here," West said earlier this season. "Twenty-one new players, new colors, new videoboard, just a whole new environment here at Pitt, and we’re going to prove to the ACC that we’re ready to go, we’re ready to be a threat and we’re ready to make some noise.”