St. John’s soccer earns hard fought draw against Butler

St. John's soccer (Photo by John Berry/Getty Images)
St. John's soccer (Photo by John Berry/Getty Images) /

The St. John’s soccer team played to a tough home draw against Butler

On Thursday night at Belson Stadium, the St. John’s soccer team stayed unbeaten in Big East play as they fought to a tough 1-1 draw against the Butler Bulldogs.

Both teams came into the match with an unbeaten record in Big East play as St. John’s defeated UConn and DePaul while Butler took down Marquette and Seton Hall to kick off their respective conference campaigns.

Prior to Thursday, the Bulldogs won nine out of its first ten games this season.

The game started out similarly to the Red Storm’s weekend win over DePaul with Butler controlling the possession early on, but the Johnnies would just need one shot to get into the lead.

Again, just like the match against DePaul last Sunday, St. John’s took the early lead after just 15 minutes as once again it was Zsani Kajan getting on the scoreboard with a chip shot over Butler’s Emma Martin.

The goal was Kajan’s 11th of the season putting her into a three-way tie for 2nd in the nation in scoring in a tightly contested field. The graduate student’s 11 goals is tied with Courtney Marten of the University of Louisiana at Monroe and Kirsten Davis of Texas Tech.

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The goal was also Kajan’s 39th career tally for St. John’s, edging her closer to some more history as she is just one goal away from Adrianna Viola for 2nd on the Red Storm’s all-time scoring list.

As the half went on, the Bulldogs would push for the equalizer but center-back Katherine Turner would make a terrific defensive play to prevent a dangerous shot from coming onto goal in the 38th minute.

St. John’s would head into the halftime with a 1-0 lead, but coming out of the break Butler dominated the possession and held the Johnnies into their own half.

St. John’s soccer tries to remain unbeaten in Big East play

The pressure would eventually get Butler the equalizer they were looking for in the 62nd minute as leading scorer Katie Soderstrom put a header past Naya Lipkens on the rebound from an incredible shot that hit the crossbar.

After the goal, the Red Storm would be under plenty of pressure as Butler just continued to pass the ball very efficiently and control possession.

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The game would head to overtime tied at one and Butler continued to dominate as they searched for a winner  but the Bulldogs could not find another goal and both teams would settle for the draw.

The match was a good result for a St. John’s team trying to climb the ladder in the Big East this year and getting a solid draw against one of the better teams in the conference is a great sign for this group that this can be a great season for the Red Storm.

The tie moves St. John’s record to 6-2-2 (2-0-1, Big East) while Butler is now 9-1-1 (2-0-1 Big East).

The Johnnies get its bye week and will be off until next Thursday, October 7, when they head to Cincinnati to take on Xavier at 7:00pm EST.

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