Costello played in 20 games last season with five starts, but not once did she score a goal. Sophomore forward Costello scored her first goal against Lock Haven last week, which virtually opened the flood gates. Costello and the KU women’s soccer team defeated Slippery Rock University 3-1; Costello either scored or assisted each point.
Costello’s efforts over the past two weeks have earned her PSAC honors for the first time in her short college soccer career. Costello was awarded with the PSAC Women’s Soccer Athlete of the Week. She tallied seven total points, three goals and one assist to earn the accomplishment.
KU, led by Costello, took on fifth ranked opponent Slippery Rock in a game that appeared to be doomed from the start. Slippery Rock began their attack early, but KU was right there with them. KU and Slippery Rock both took four shots a piece in the first half; the only difference being Slippery Rock scoring in the first half.
After a solid cross from Slippery Rock’s Caitlin Binder to Kara Mullins, the opposition took a lead with just three minutes remaining in the first half. More often than not, goals scored at the end of a half can be devastating to a team’s momentum and ultimately cost the game.
However, KU would not just roll over and came out looking like a completely new team. KU was relentless in the second half, not giving Slippery Rock a single shot, making things quite easy for junior Casey Behrendt. Contrarily, KU assaulted the opposing goal keeper with nine shots.
Within the first three minutes of the second half, Sam Costello sparked the offense with a nice cross to freshman Diana Malanga for the goal. This would not be the end of Costello’s onslaught, nor would it be the last time Malanga and Costello would connect. About 10 minutes into the half, the two would meet again, this time Malanga with the assist and Costello with the goal. Another cross to a header was the result of the goal.
With the lead at 2-1, the Golden Bears were determined to seal the game up with that third and final comfort goal. Four minutes after the last goal, BrieAnn Shipkowski took a 12-foot foul kick and directed the ball right towards Costello yet again who seemed almost to have a magnet attracting the ball to her. Costello would seal the deal with another header and the last goal of the game to finish it 3-1.
KU is out to an excellent start with a 4-2 record, 3-0 in the conference. KU’s last four games have all been at home, and they will now go on the road for another four games. KU will look to defeat East Stroudsburg University Saturday, Sept. 22 at 7 p.m.
by Kyle Johnson