Women’s soccer dominates with 2 shutout wins

Audrey Thomas ’17 had a shot on goal in the women’s 2-0 win against Farmingdale State. -Photo Courtesy of Sports Information
Audrey Thomas ’17 had a shot on goal in the women’s 2-0 win against Farmingdale State. -Photo Courtesy of Sports Information

Women’s soccer (5-1-2, 2-1-1 in the NESCAC) continued its impressive defensive performances and secured two more victories last week. The women beat Farmingdale State 4-0 on Saturday, and on Oct. 2, they also took down Springfield 2-0.

On Saturday, the women looked dominant throughout the game. The Ephs started well and created several scoring opportunities in the first half. In the 19th minute, Audrey Thomas ’17 missed her shot a touch wide of goal after making an excellent run in behind the Rams’ defensive line. In the next wave of attack, Thomas had another scoring opportunity, but her shot clipped the post instead of finding the back of the net.

Throughout the half, the women kept the pressure on Farmingdale’s back line. Abby Morss ’16 made a nice run into the box from the right flank, dribbled around goalkeeper Breanna Blair and went for goal. Unfortunately, her shot was deflected by Rams’ defender Shannon Kennedy, who had retreated back to assist her keeper.

In the final minute of the first half, Morss took a shot from the top of the box. Blair made the initial save but could not hang onto the ball, and Natalie Weyerhaeuser ’15 stroked it cleanly inside the right goalpost to put the Ephs up 1-0 at halftime.

Farmingdale looked sharper in the second half, but Williams maintained its hold on the game. The Ephs’ defense held strong and resisted the sporadic counterattacks from the Rams. With 15 minutes to go in the second half, the women doubled their lead as Katie Wardlaw ’17 fired home a shot from an assist by Morss. Wardlaw’s score put the Ephs up 2-0. Just 30 seconds later, Hana Tomozawa ’15 beat her defender and found Alison Magruder ’15 with a pass just outside the box. Magruder, who led the Ephs with five shots on goal, made the score 3-0, putting her shot out of Blair’s reach and into the back of the net.

In the 90th minute, the women added a fourth goal, with Weyerhaeuser assisting Maddie Swarr ’17 for her first collegiate goal. Overall, the women outshot Farmingdale 25 to four, and goalkeepers Hannah Van Wetter ’15 and Tressa Palcheck ’17 had one save each. Blair made seven saves on the day.

On Oct. 2, the women took on Springfield and came away with a 2-0 victory. Once again, Williams dominated the game, playing at a high tempo and looking dangerous offensively.

Wardlaw opened the scoring in the 25th minute. She darted infield from the left flank and ripped a shot past the Pride’s goalkeeper. Wardlaw had three shots total in the game. Springfield had its offensive opportunities in the first half as well, as two shots from striker Nicole Fowler just missed the target.

After halftime, Springfield once again threatened to level the score at one. The Pride earned a free kick just outside the box, but the ensuing shot was cleared easily by the Ephs’ defense. The game continued back-and-forth until the 58th minute, when Williams doubled its lead. Wardlaw found Magruder, who buried her shot to make the score 2-0.

Despite pressure from Springfield in the dying moments of the game, the women’s defense thwarted any offensive opportunities to keep its clean sheet. On the day, the Ephs outshot the Pride 23 to nine. Van Wetter made two saves, while Springfield’s goalkeeper made seven.

“I was thrilled with how we competed this past week against two out-of-conference teams,” said Head Coach Michelyne Pinard. “This team is full of crazy competitors, and I think that showed. I’m also really excited about how many opportunities we are creating and how few scoring opportunities other teams are getting. Everyone is attacking and everyone is defending. I think much of our success is coming from everyone working so hard off the ball so that players on the ball can relax and make great decisions. I am hopeful that we are firing on all cylinders at the exact right time, as we head into the thick of our conference schedule.”

The women next travel to Wesleyan on Saturday for a 1:30 p.m. matchup before heading up to Bowdoin on Sunday for a 1 p.m. game.