The Pitt women’s soccer team faced its tallest order of the 2020 season on Sunday, as it traveled to Annapolis, Maryland, to face a Navy team coming off a 16-3-3 campaign in 2019. The result was a 90-minute stalemate that would have to be resolved in overtime, and in that extra period, the Midshipmen would blink first, and the Panthers would come away with a 1-0 win and an unblemished 4-0 record.
As has become customary this season, Amanda West and Leah Pais both had a hand in Pitt’s offensive production. Pais was taken down in the box by Navy defender Kaitlynn Johns and awarded a shot. West then took the shot, slotting it past Navy goalkeeper Molly Swigger to score the game-winning goal.
| Leah Pais does the dirty work, & @amanda_westt gets the golden goal!— Pitt Women's Soccer (@Pitt_WSOC) September 20, 2020
Pitt 1️⃣ | Navy 0
: https://t.co/gBsyW5kPa7#H2P pic.twitter.com/jnuQqsdcRB
In between the posts for Pitt was Katherine Robinson, who recorded her second solo clean sheet in a row after helping Pitt to a 2-0 victory over Syracuse on Thursday. She split Pitt’s two games against Appalachian State with Caitlyn Lazzarini. Robinson allowed zero goals in both of those games as well.
“Extremely proud of our team today,” Pitt head coach Randy Waldrum said after the game. “To watch the growth of these players is a really a fun thing to see. I thought defensively we were very good today. Athalie Palomo, Hailey Davidson, Kate McKay and Mackenzie Edwards were very solid. Katherine Robinson was very confident in the goal as well.”
“Navy is a very good team: NCAA tournament experienced and older than our young team,” Waldrum continued. “So I’m very proud of the performance. I thought Leah Pais was really good in her holdup play today and did a great job on drawing the penalty kick. Amanda West was huge in stepping up under pressure to win it for us.”
With the victory, the Panthers are off to their best start since 2009, which was the last time they opened the season with four consecutive wins. The Panthers are also one game away from matching their 2019 win total.
In addition, West’s game-winning goal saw her once again climb the program leaderboard in career goals and points. She now has 14 goals and 40 points, both of which rank sixth in the Pitt women’s soccer program’s 24-year history.
The Panthers will return to the pitch on Thursday to take on the Citadel at Washington Light Infantry Field in Charleston, South Carolina. The match will be the first in a two-game series with a team that went 6-11-2 in 2019 and is off to a 1-0-1 start this year. Kickoff from Charleston is set for 4 p.m. ET.