Late Goal Ends Women's Soccer Season in PLT Quarters
BOSTON, Mass. -- The Lafayette women's soccer team seemed to execute its gameplan to perfection in the Patriot League Tournament Quarterfinal game at Boston U. on Tuesday evening. The Leopards held the third-seeded Terriers off the board for more than 74 minutes, hoping to steal a late goal and make more tournament magic a la Joanna Scotti's overtime winner at Lehigh a year ago.
Unfortunately, it wasn't meant to be this time around as BU's Jacki Carty knocked a header past Lafayette senior goalkeeper Kelly O'Brien in the 75th minute and the home side went on to a 1-0 win, ending the Leopards' 2017 season.
Lafayette, making its first back-to-back postseason appearances since 1993, earned its way to Tuesday night with a win over Loyola on Saturday, giving the Leopards the sixth seed, a spot in which they advanced to the semifinals in 2016. Boston U. earned the three seed after going 6-2-1 in Patriot League play and was participating in its first-ever quarterfinal game after earning a bye into the semifinal round each of the last four seasons.
The game was a well-defended affair as both sides continued to thwart opposing scoring chances throughout the match. Goalkeeper play came up big as both freshman Maggie Pohl and O'Brien were stellar between the pipes for the Maroon and White. Pohl stopped four shots in her first half of action, while O'Brien made two saves in the second stanza.
Pohl's best saves came at the 19th and 38th minutes of the opening half. Reading a through-ball down the left side into the box, she came off her line and closed down a dangerous opportunity early to stuff a shot attempt and keep the Terriers off the board. Then, about 20 minutes later, BU's Kelly Harris found space to the right of goal and, after cutting into the box on a Leopard defender, sent a shot on target that needed a diving save from Pohl low to her left to keep it out of the net.
Right at the end of the first half came one of two excellent scoring chances in the game for the Maroon and White. As the clock was winding down, the Leopards earned a free kick right at the top of the box. Junior co-captain Gabrielle Martone stepped up and chipped a shot that missed perfect placement by inches, hitting the intersection of the post and the crossbar in the top right corner and deflecting away as the buzzer sounded.
Lafayette's second chance surfaced midway through the second half, this time during the run of play. Senior defender Gabrielle Lassinger sent a perfect long ball up the right flank that allowed junior Katie Brannigan to run under it. Brannigan found classmate Alex Stanford in the middle of the box with just the goalie to beat, but Stanford's shot went right at Terriers' goalkeeper Amanda Fay.
The goal came about 10 minutes later and BU was able to run out the final 15 minutes to end it by a 1-0 score. The Leopards finish their 2017 campaign at 5-9-2 overall as the careers come to a close for seniors O'Brien, Rebekka Arnthorsdottir, Paige Thompson, Lassinger and Olivia Heitz.