Before the match against the University of Alabama-Birmingham Blazers, graduate student Nicole Douglas was just two goals shy of breaking the ASU scoring record. It only took six minutes for Douglas to score the first of six goals for the Sun Devils in their dominant 6-2 victory Thursday.
All eyes were on Douglas as she was expected to break the scoring record within the next few games and she did just that. The Sun Devils came out strong against a solid UAB team after Douglas scored the first goal, which tied the previous record of 50 set by Stacey Tullock. The Blazers responded in just eight minutes with a goal of their own by Stella Lawson.
Both squads played competitive and even soccer in the first half. The ball was stuck around midfield, besides a few shots from junior Lucy Johnson and graduate student Alexia Delgado that allowed for some chances on the net.
The Sun Devils again opened up the second half just as they did in the first with a quick score by freshman Enasia Colon, her first goal as a Sun Devil. Building off Colon's first career goal in the ASU uniform, the Sun Devils continued to dominate midfield by putting the Blazers in uncomfortable situations with intense pressure.
With the Tempe sun boiling down on the team and with just 25 minutes left, Douglas received a ball from Johnson, split two defenders and buried the ball in the bottom right corner to cement herself in ASU soccer history. It was Douglas' 51st goal as a Sun Devil, making the London native the school's all-time leading goal scorer.
Being up two goals, the Sun Devils did not slow down play. They kept pressure, which made UAB turn the ball over after being down by two. Just four minutes later, graduate student Eva van Deursen notched the first goal of her season.
The Blazers responded with another goal from Lawson after a miscommunication between the Sun Devil defense and freshman goalkeeper Pauline Nelles.
The Sun Devils canceled games on Sept. 4 and Sept. 8 because of COVID-19 developments inside the program. The next game is Sept. 14 against Grambling.
ASU volleyball made the trek to Atlanta to compete in the Georgia Tech Invitational. The Sun Devils went head-to-head against fifth-ranked Georgia Institute of Technology, Florida International University and the University of Dayton.
On Friday, ASU faced Dayton and won 3-2. The win over the Flyers allowed senior outside hitter Iman Isanovic to reach 1,000 kills over her volleyball career.
The victory against Dayton transferred quickly to the game against Florida International as the Sun Devils had a 3-1 victory over the Panthers. Isanovic and sophomore Geli Cyr led the team in kills.
On Saturday, the Sun Devils battled against Georgia Tech. ASU started strong against the undefeated Yellow Jackets. Georgia Tech won the first two sets 25-17 and 25-22, respectively.
Junior Marta Levinska led the ASU attack with five kills. Levinska had the highest amount of successful digs within the set. ASU won 25-13.
The fourth set was rocky for the Sun Devils as the first 10 points were riddled with serve errors and defense issues. Georgia Tech kept energy in the set by dominating the court with 12 kills and 11 assists. ASU's Jaden Ravnsborg kept defense strong for the Sun Devils with four digs and five serve receives. ASU fell to Georgia Tech in the end 10-25.
The Sun Devils' next contest will be at the Baylor Invitational on Sept. 9.
Edited by Walker Smith, Logan Stanley and Piper Hansen.
Addison Kalmbach is a reporter for The State Press Sports desk. He has previously worked for Detroit City FC and PHOENIX Magazine.
Bennett Silvyn is a reporter for the sports desk at The State Press. He has previously worked for Walter Cronkite Sports Network and FC Tucson.