Aug. 29, 2010
EAST LANSING, Mich. - Michigan State junior All-American Laura Heyboer scored her first goal of the season to lead the Spartan women's soccer team to a 1-0 win over Western Michigan in MSU's home opener on Sunday. It was Heyboer's first goal since suffering a season-ending knee injury while scoring the game-winning goal against Minnesota last October. MSU improved to 2-1 on the season, while the Broncos fell to 2-1.
The only goal came in the game's 32nd minute. Coming off a Western Michigan corner kick, Heyboer and Megan Pines combined on a 2-on-2 counter attack. Heyboer dribbled into the right side of the box, eluded a Bronco defender and buried the ball into the back left corner of the net. Pines recorded the assist on the play. It was the 30th goal of Heyboer's Spartan career, moving her into sole possession of fifth place on the MSU career rankings.
"Sometimes the first goal back is the hardest," said Heyboer. "Now I have my confidence back. My shooting is doing well, I have to get a little better. But, I am hoping that I will be able to bury another one the next time."
Western Michigan's best scoring chance came late in the second half. Nicole Dulyea sent a free kick from outside the box over the Spartan wall, but MSU goalkeeper Jill Flietstra knocked the shot over the cross bar at the 14:15 mark, preserving the 1-0 lead. Fleitstra finished with three saves for the Spartans. WMU's Julia Francy made six saves in goal for the Broncos.
"Since DeMartin Stadium has opened, we have had a very strong home showing," said MSU head coach Tom Saxton. "We want to build on that legacy. That was one of the things that we talked about with the team this week. At the end of day we got the result we needed, although it wasn't as pretty as we would have liked."
Michigan State returns to action Friday (Sept. 3) as it hosts Eastern Michigan at 5 p.m.