WICHITA, Kan. — It took all 90 minutes of regulation and another nine in overtime for eighth-ranked Butler soccer to show why they are an NJCAA Top 10 team, as the Grizzlies recorded a 1-0 overtime win over No. 7 Lewis & Clark (Ill.) Monday morning from Stryker Sports Complex in Wichita, KS.
Butler sophomore forward Karter Corini scored the game-winning goal with less than a minute left in the first overtime period as the Grizzlies (4-1-0 overall) knocked off yet another ranked opponent - their third this season.
Corini's header goal was set up by a great cross from midfielder Pricsila Bonilla to the front of the net, while Corini was able to get position for the header.
"I saw (Bonilla) coming down the line so I made a cut in, got in front of my defender and hit the ball with the side of my head and into the back of the net," said Corini on her goal.
"Our defense was really strong in getting the ball forward," mentioned Corini, "and 'P' did a great job crossing it in multiple times and we finally got on it."
The win was the Grizzlies' first over Lewis & Clark, who defeated Butler last year in pool play at the NJCAA National Tournament. The Trailblazers (1-2-0 overall) had won the previous two meetings against Butler (2009, 2018).
Butler had multiple scoring opportunities throughout the game with 22 shots with 15 of those being on goal, with most of the shots coming in the second half and overtime period.
"Their goalkeeper saved three or four goals," said Butler head coach Adam Hunter. "We had some good hard shots on goal but they were at the keeper and couldn't get it through. We need to create more opportunities. I know 22 shots sounds like a lot, but not enough for as much as we had the ball in the final third," commented Hunter.
With limited subs on the bench for the Trailblazers, Butler was able to take advantage of Lewis & Clark's fatigue.
"I was hoping we would start the game with a little higher tempo to get into their legs earlier, but we let them hang around for a long time and then again, the last 15 minutes or so of regulation we started to create a lot of opportunities due to their fatigue," said Hunter.
Monday's shutout was the Grizzlies' second consecutive shutout - both over NJCAA Top 10-ranked opponents, as Butler blanked Navarro 1-0 on Saturday. Butler now has three straight victories over NJCAA preseason-ranked squads (Hill, Navarro and Lewis & Clark).
"This game was another result where we grind it out," mentioned Hunter. "I think this team is going to prove to be difficult to score on this year. Their keeper made some great saves in the second half. We really didn't get on our front foot until and get at them until the last 15 minutes of the second half and then into the overtime period."
Butler goalkeeper Lexi Winkle had a productive day in the net with eight saves and no goals scored while picking up her fourth win of the season.
Butler will travel Wednesday to Kansas City Kansas to take on the Blue Devils to open Jayhawk Conference play. The contest will start at 6:00 p.m.
"First, we have to recover," Hunter said. "It is Monday and we have to turn around and play on Wednesday. They (Kansas City Kansas) are continuing to be a program on the rise and I think it is going to be difficult to be on the road on Wednesdays and be the defending conference champ and take a lot of teams best shot but hopefully we are built for it."
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