Penalty kick costly for Blue Demons in 2-1 loss to Butler


Mary Grace Blake

Senior midfielder Ebba Costow dribbles past Butler defender during Sunday’s 2-1 loss.

Looking to earn their first conference win of the season, DePaul’s women’s soccer team continued a theme they had been showcasing all season long: suffocating defense. Against a Butler Bulldogs team that, entering Sunday, had outshot opponents 201 to 102, DePaul weathered the storm.

From the first whistle, Butler dominated time of possession, peppering shot after shot. Graduate senior goalkeeper Mollie Eriksson and her defense stood tall, blocking eight shots on nine attempts. Butler’s lone goal of the first half came at the 43:46 minute mark, thanks to junior midfielder Anna Schroeder. After a corner kick by sophomore midfielder Sara Trandji, junior midfielder Arianna Jalics headed it, setting up Schroeder’s goal.

Despite being outshot 8-1 in the first half, DePaul had multiple chances but found themselves unable to capitalize. Unfazed, the Blue Demons stuck with their defensive game plan and were finally able to find an opening. At the 58:43 mark, sophomore forward Katie Godden capitalized off of a deflection, tying the game at 1. 

“Someone just crossed it in,” Godden said. “There was a scramble in the box, and I just put my laces through it, and it went in.”

Butler has been one of the best teams in the Big East this season at drawing fouls, finding a way to get under their opponent’s skin. Entering the match, Butler’s opponents had been called for 141 fouls compared to only 106 on the Bulldogs. Butler was able to put this ability to good use late in the second half, drawing a penalty kick at the 66:35 minute mark. Redshirt junior forward Abigail Isger buried it, giving Butler a 2-1 lead.

“You have got to keep your composure and not feed into it,” head coach Michele O’Brien said. “I don’t know if we did a great job of that today. We kind of gave in to what they wanted us to do. It eventually catches up with you.”

From there, DePaul was unable to find an equalizer, falling short 2-1, losing their fourth straight game by one goal.

In the first half, graduate senior Ellie Mink was helped off the field by her team due to a leg injury. Thankfully, she was able to return in the second half.

“I’m not exactly sure what happened,” O’Brien said. “I think she got kicked in her ankle and then rolled it. A sprain. I don’t know the severity of it. Coming off surgery on her ankle, that was a scare, but she was able to regroup through halftime.”

This game was somewhat of a reunion for sophomore forward Susie Sodderstrom, with her older sister, redshirt senior midfielder Katie Sodderstrom, lined up across the pitch. The two were only teammates in high school for a year, and this marked the second and last time they faced off in college.

“Before the game, I gave her a hug,” Sodderstrom said. “I haven’t seen her in a while. A lot of sibling rivalry. We are both forwards so we don’t really play against each other. But on the plays where we are battling, each person is trying to get a poke on it. It is very fun and very, very competitive. It’s bragging rights.”

DePaul (2-10, 0-5) will be back in action on Thursday, Oct. 13 for a road matchup against their conference foe Connecticut (6-5-1, 2-3). First touch is set for 6 p.m. CDT.