MONTGOMERY, Ala. – Samuelle Grove scored a pair of goals and assisted on another as Gardner-Webb women's soccer cruised to a 5-1 road win at Alabama State Sunday afternoon.
The Runnin' Bulldogs (3-5-2) finished with 24 shots, putting 17 on frame, and were able to play a high number of reserves in the final non-conference tilt of the 2016 season.
"This was a very good way to end our non-conference schedule, with the Big South starting up next week," said head coach Mike Varga. "We built some confidence by coming out and scoring some goals. We stick with the game plan and executed well. Getting a couple on the board early set the tone and we finished well. Our depth really impacted the game. Everyone who came in did a good job of keeping the level high. Overall it was a good win for us."
Grove struck quickly, taking a cross from Brandi Arey and putting it into the right corner for a 1-0 lead just more than five minutes into the match.
That lead would remain going into halftime, as Gardner-Webb held a 7-3 shooting advantage over the first 45 minutes.
The Runnin' Bulldogs kept pressure on throughout the final 45 minutes, and finally broke through for a 3-0 lead when freshman Ty Snell hammered home a long, lifting shot from outside the box at the 74:57 mark.
Alabama State countered with a goal in the 82nd minute, with Lexi Krieger dribbled around her defender and connected to trim the lead to 3-1.
The Runnin' Bulldogs struck back in just 10 seconds for a 4-1 lead. Grove took advantage on a through ball from freshmen Eline Glamsland and Stina Kleppe, putting her second goal in the back of the net at the 82:42 mark.
Grove returned the favor less than three minutes later, finding Jessica Ferguson on a cross – and Ferguson connected on her third goal of the season for what would be the final margin.
Gardner-Webb's second half flurry included 17 shots, with 13 of those on frame.
Glamsland had five shots on the day (four on goal), Kleppe got off four shots (two on goal) and Grove finished by putting all four of her attempts on frame. Arey also had four shots (two on goal).
Keely Brown finished with two saves, going the distance in the net for the win.
Gardner-Webb will open Big South Conference action this weekend, traveling to face Longwood on Saturday (Sept. 24) at 2:00 pm. GWU will play its first three league matches on the road, before returning home on October 5 to host Liberty (7:00 pm).