Site: Rochester, Mich. (OU Soccer Field)
Score: Michigan 1, Oakland 0
Records: U-M (6-2-0), Oakland (2-2-2)
Next U-M Event: Saturday, Sept. 15 -- vs. Indiana (U-M Soccer Field), 7 p.m.
ROCHESTER, Mich. -- Sophomore Christina Murillo's (Ojai, Calif./Nordhoff) score at 4:30 held up as the game-winner as the University of Michigan women's soccer team won in shutout fashion for the fifth time this season, blanking Oakland, 1-0, on Sunday evening (Sept. 9) at OU Soccer Field. Murillo's first career goal came off a feed from junior and fellow FIFA U-20 Women's World Cup participant Shelina Zadorsky (London, Ontario/St. Thomas Aquinas).
Michigan outshot Oakland by a 13-1 margin in the first 45 minutes. The only goal of the match came at the 4:30 mark of the first half, and it came from Murillo, who received a corner from Zadorsky just outside the 18-yard box. Her shot went in between several Oakland defenders and into the back of the net, giving Michigan a 1-0 advantage.
Junior Nkem Ezurike (Lower Sackville, Nova Scotia/Sackville) nearly made it 2-0 in the 18th minute. Ezurike eluded the Oakland defense and managed to get a one-on-one opportunity with Oakland goalkeeper Shannon Coley, but her low shot was deflected and cleared to keep the score at 1-0.
Though there were no scoring plays in the second half, both teams had several opportunities. Murillo nearly added to her goal total in the 60th minute, but her header attempt was saved. Oakland had two opportunities in the final 10 minutes to even the score, but Haley Kopmeyer (Troy, Mich./Lahser) was up to the task both times. In the 81st minute, Kopmeyer made a diving save to her left on a shot from Oakland forward Nicole DeLuca. Oakland's final opportunity came in the 87th minute, but DeLuca's shot was wide right of the net, preserving the Michigan shutout.
Kopmeyer made three saves to pilot a Michigan defense that did not allow a goal for the fifth time this season.
U-M will return home to host Indiana next Saturday night (Sept. 15, 7 p.m.) at U-M Soccer Stadium. Fans with a UMass football ticket receive free admission, maize pompons will be given away at the door to the first 500 fans, and all players will be available for postgame autographs. [ Tickets ]
Shots: U-M 17, OU 6
Shots on Goal: U-M 6, OU 3
Saves: U-M 3 (Haley Kopmeyer), OU 5 (Shannon Coley)
Corner Kicks: U-M 9, OU 0
Cards: U-M, Team, 85:24 (yellow).
N O T E S
Michigan improves to 11-3-2 all-time vs. Oakland. The Wolverines have won five straight meetings.
The Wolverines finished their non-conference slate with a 6-2-0 record. They are 11-4-1 the last two years in non-conference play.
Five of Michigan's six wins have been shutouts.
With Christina Murillo's first-half goal, nine different Michigan players have scored at least one goal this season. Additionally, 12 players have recorded at least one point.
Q U O T E S
Michigan Head Coach Greg Ryan
On the team's defensive effort against Oakland ... "I thought we did really well. We were able to limit Oakland to just a few chances. They had a pretty close call there at the end, but Haley made a great save. We pressured Oakland for 90 minutes, so they didn't have too many good looks. But when you are up one, there's always a chance for the other team to get back in it, but we held, and I'm proud of our effort there."
On Christina Murillo ... "She's going to get a lot more goals. She just strikes the ball so well. We wrote that corner kick up today because they don't keep anyone outside of the box, and thought, 'Eh, we'll give it a go.' Sure enough, she smacked it right into the back of the net. I think she had a header on the back post, too, late in the match. She's a fantastic all-around player, both on defense and in the attack. Tina is playing like a pro, not a college student."
U-M Sophomore Christina Murillo
On her goal ... "We had planned it earlier today, actually. I think the other team was shocked, and honestly, I took the shot and got lucky with it. It took two years to get that first career goal, but it really felt good to finally have it."
On if there was pressure on her to score a goal after so many close calls ... "I was nervous the past games because I wasn't scoring. I think I have the third-most shooting totals on the team, so I'm just happy I was able to score a goal and help the team win."
Contact: Brad Rudner (734) 763-4423