Women's soccer falls to Lehigh and Columbia
The Marist Red Foxes women's soccer team dropped a pair of games over the weekend to Lehigh and Columbia, respectively. Lehigh got the best of Marist 3-0, while the Lions of Columbia edged out the Red Foxes 1-0. The losses drop Marist to 5-4 on the season.
On Friday night, the Mountain Hawks struck first on a Rosie Vitta shot that found the top left corner of the net for a 1-0 halftime lead.
The hosts would add to their lead on a free kick goal by Darby Dustman in the 64th minute before accounting for the final margin with a goal in the 77th minute.
Nicole Kuhar provided the best chance of the match for the Red Foxes as she sent one just wide of the net off a cross by Samantha Panzner in the latter stages of the second half.
Each team had six shots on goal, while Marist outshot Lehigh 13-9 in total shots.
Returning to the pitch on Sunday afternoon, the Red Foxes came up just short in a tight 1-0 affair that featured a number of quality chances for both sides.
Columbia's Natalie Melo got a diving header past Marist goalie Andrea Wicks for the match's only goal at 44:06.
Marist would fire a barrage of shots on net in the second half, only to be denied by a defender who happened to be in the right place at the right time in the game's final minute.
First, however, Rycke Guiney delivered a corner in the 51st minute that sophomore Marjana Maksuti headed just high over the net.
The search for the equalizer almost became a whole lot harder, but Wicks denied Columbia's Shannon Fitzpatrick on a breakaway attempt in the 60th minute that kept the score 1-0.
With eight minutes to play, junior Alycia Cartica nearly knotted the match at one as she took a through ball from Guiney, but fired it right at Lions' keeper Grace Redmon.
In the game's final seconds, MAAC rookie of the year Amanda Epstein nearly forced overtime with some heroics of her own. The Jericho, N.Y., native took a pass from freshman Alyssa Murphy and found her way around the keeper before sending a shot that was struck out of danger by a Columbia defender with just four seconds remaining on the clock.
As Marist prepares to return home this weekend, head coach Cait Lyn is keeping a positive attitude as her team tries to bounce back from the losses.
"After watching the film, I think we did some great things. We had a lot of good build-up and we had our MAAC rookie of the year back, she had to get back in the swing of the physicality of the game and despite the two losses, we are showing well," Lyn said.
The Red Foxes will return home looking to keep their perfect home record in tact as they host the Binghamton Bearcats on Friday night at 7 p.m. in the team's annual "Pink Out" match. Marist will also host Temple in a Sunday afternoon matinee slated for a 4 p.m. kick off.
"I think the girls are always energized knowing that they are going to be playing in front of their fans. This week in training is going to be a lot of competition, getting down and dirty and really preparing for MAAC play. Having two wins going into MAAC play will be a key for us," Lyn said.
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