Jackets win second straight, beat Thiel on senior night

Adam Morgante, For the Yellow

It was a rainy and dreary night at John F. Wiley Stadium.

The rain didn’t stop the Waynesburg women’s soccer team from defeating the Thiel Tomcats 3-0, for its second win in Presidents’ Athletic Conference play. The game was ultimately decided in the first minute when senior forward Christina Golonka scored her third goal of the season, finishing a cross from fellow senior Gina Bonura.

“It [the ball] literally rolled across the line,” Golonka said. “And I was able enough to just get my toe on that ball for it to finish.”

Sophomore forward Leesha Wagner tallied her team leading fifth goal of the season in the 58th minute to give Waynesburg [4-10-2] a two-goal advantage. Golonka added to her stats with an assist on the goal. Junior midfielder Jessica Silbaugh provided  an insurance goal in the 69th minute off a corner kick from junior Maddy Manz. That went through for Silbaugh’s second goal of the season.

“Our team moved the ball really well side to side and stuck to the game plan,” coach Laura Heethuis said. “They also came out hungry and ready to play from the opening minute.”

The Jackets dominated in the shot category, outshooting the Tomcats, 19 to 6. Waynesburg had 11 shots on goal and Thiel had just three. Freshman goalkeeper Autumn Blair had an easy night as she only had to make one save. Blair’s classmate,  Kennedy Schuck, relieved her in goal late in the game, making the other two stops for Waynesburg.

Winning on senior night was important for Golonka.

“It means a lot to us. Coach gave us a big-time speech before the game and she said do it for the seniors,” Golonka said. “For us seniors we’re like ‘we’re doing this for ourselves, we are doing it for the team. The rest of the team was just like this is for us, so it was awesome.”

Heethuis acknowledges how much this senior class has brought to her team.

“The senior girls have brought so much passion and commitment to this program,” Heethuis said. “They have grown immensely as soccer players and as people in their four years.”

Golonka didn’t hesitate when asked about what she will miss most about playing soccer at Waynesburg.

“The thing I’ll probably miss the most is the 27 girls that I play soccer with every single day,” Golonka said.

Waynesburg’s final game of the season is Tuesday against Geneva at John F. Wiley Stadium.

“This senior class is certainly very talented but I’m going to miss them as people so much more,” Heethius said. “They are truly a joy to be around and I love each one of them and what they bring to our soccer family.”