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Leopards Top American in Overtime, 2-1

Finelli scored the game-tying goal in the 65th minute.

Oct. 9, 2011

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EASTON, Pa. - Ninety-nine seconds into overtime Janelle Pierson headed the game-winning goal past American goalkeeper Klare Lazor, giving the Lafayette women's soccer team its best start in Patriot League play in program history. With the 2-1 win, the Leopards (8-3-1, 3-0-0 Patriot) stand alone atop the league standings with nine points.

The goal was set up by a cross from Alex Reisinger, who sent a ball from the right wing into the center of the penalty area that found Pierson's head.

"I was a little disappointed in the way we played in the first half and some credit should go to American as well," head coach Mick Statham said. "I thought we were too passive and not proactive enough in the first 45 minutes. I give full credit to the players though, they responded after halftime and again after going a goal down. They found a way to win today, scoring a terrific goal and I couldn't be any happier for them."

After a scoreless opening half, American (4-10-1, 0-3-0 Patriot) broke the tie in the 55th minute when Carleigh Morba pounced on a rebound and put the ball into the empty net. The goal was set up by a long range shot from Michaela Cowgill which Lauren Smedley deflected into the crossbar with her right hand and then sat in the goal mouth for Morba.

In the 65th minute Julia Bell stripped an Eagles defender of the ball, carried it to the endline and sent a low cross into the 18-yard box. Alyssa Finelli ran onto the cross and one timed it into the back of the net, knotting the score at one.

American had a great scoring opportunity with less than five minutes to play, as Jasmine Mohandesi got behind the Lafayette defense and found herself one on one with Smedley.

The junior keeper came off her line to challenge Mohandesi and turned away the shot, keeping the game tied. Smedley totaled eight saves in goal on the afternoon. The Eagles took 13 shots in the match, compared to seven from Lafayette. Each team took three corner kicks.

Lafayette continues its Patriot League schedule on Oct. 15 against Holy Cross. The contest is the final regular season home game for the Leopards and kickoff is slated for 3 p.m.