CLINCHED! Leopards Tourney-Bound for Second Straight Year
BALTIMORE, Md. – Junior Alex Stanford sent a missile of a shot past Loyola goalkeeper Sumer Rahe for the lone goal in a 1-0 win on Saturday afternoon for the Lafayette women’s soccer team, sending the Leopards to the Patriot League Tournament for the second straight season.
Following a scoreless hour of action, sophomore Alexa Buffa and senior Gabrielle Lassinger linked up with Stanford for the game-winner in the 66th minute. Lassinger sent a ball forward to a cutting Buffa, who left it for an open Stanford in space. The junior made no mistake, beating Rahe for the winner.
The victory, coupled with a 3-0 win by Lehigh over Holy Cross in Bethlehem, Pa., earns Lafayette the sixth seed in the Patriot League Tournament, opening up on Tuesday evening. The Leopards will travel to Boston U., which defeated Colgate by a 3-1 score on Saturday to secure the tournament’s third seed, for the Patriot League Tournament Quarterfinal.
The postseason berth is the second straight for the Maroon and White, who knocked off Lehigh in the quarterfinals a year ago before falling to Bucknell in the semifinal round. It also marks the first time since 1993 that the Leopards will compete in postseason play in back-to-back seasons.
Freshman Maggie Pohl and Senior Kelly O’Brien spent their usual halves between the pipes, each making two saves in the shutout victory. O’Brien picks up the win by virtue of being in net when the winning goal was scored, moving her season record to 4-3-2.
Loyola had a handle on the game offensively, winning the shot battle, 10-5, and in corners, 6-3, but Stanford’s strike was the only one that mattered in the tight victory. The Leopards finish the 2017 regular-season campaign at 5-8-2 overall and 3-5-1 in Patriot League action.
The quarterfinal game at Boston U. is scheduled for Tuesday evening with kickoff slated for 7 p.m.