Lasell Women's Soccer Falls to No. 9 Williams in NCAA Tournament
WALTHAM, MA -The Williams College Ephs women's soccer team knocked the Lasell College Lasers from the 2010 NCAA Tournament with a 3-0 victory on Saturday afternoon on Marcus Field at Brandeis University. The Ephs and Lasers battled through a 0-0 tie for over 68 minutes before the NCAA Division III 9th ranked team in the country scored the game-decider, at 68:49.
Williams' leading scorer Brett Eisenhart (Seattle, WA) put an end to Lasell's eight-game unbeaten streak when she tallied the game-winner, at 68:49, unassisted from the right flank. Just under two minutes later, Sara Wild (Portland, OR), the New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) Player of the Year, converted on the Ephs second goal to pad Williams' lead. Kristine Nakada (Almeda, CA) would close out the scoring in the 84th minute with a hard shot to the top right corner.
Lasell's goalkeeper Elizabeth Stickley (Mashpee, MA) played an outstanding game between the pipes for the Lasers making smart plays and tough saves through 84 minutes. Stickley (9-4-1) made seven stops prior to the game-changer crossing the goal line.
Williams' goalie Julia Schreiber (Cockeysville, MD) was credited with the NCAA first round win. Schreiber (9-3-1) played a complete first half in net, yet remained untested during that 45 minute stretch. Relief net-minder Laura Wann (Palos Verdes, CA) took over ranks in the second half and made two saves to preserve the shutout.
The Ephs dominated play throughout the contest, using strength in the middle, speed, and pinpoint passing to control the tempo of the contest. Williams' Caitlyn Clark (Middleton, MA) launched the first shot of the game just over five minutes in but was off-target. Sachi Siegelman (Piedmont, CA) followed up with another Eph shot just moments later which was blocked by senior defender Olivia Tsakiris (Killingly, CT).
The Ephs got their first corner at 12:04 which was kicked neatly into position by Wild but none of her teammates were there to take a chance at net. Wild and Bridget Gallagher (Cranford, NJ) coupled together on a give-and-go breakaway in the 15th minute which Stickley deflected away from goal for her first save. Wild sprinted down the left sideline carrying the ball to a shot from the baseline at which point Stickley picked up the diving save.
Lasell's offense was unable to execute through the better part of 20 minutes before Jamie Harris (Lynnfield, MA) produced the first Lasell shot, at 19:49, which was blocked by Eph defender Chelsea Davies (New York, NY).
Stickley notched her second save when Seigleman drove a long shot from the right field at 28:40 and Stickley punched it aside and out the direct line of the goal.
Lasell's best chance of the half came at 34:05 when sophomore midfielder Reegan Brackett (Scarborough, ME) was fouled at 25 yards out leading to a direct kick for Lasell. Harris took the free kick which sailed over the top of Williams' defenders and skimmed the top of the Ephs net before cruising out of play.
With one minute left in the first half, Lasell fouled the Ephs at the top of the eighteen resulting in a shot by Kara Duggan (Poway, CA) which was cleared away by Lasell's junior defender Meredith Hessler (Middletown, RI) to close the half with a scoreless tie.
At the intermission, Williams held a 10-2 edge in shot as well as a 3-0 advantage in corner kicks. Stickley made two saves in the period, however, the numbers do not do justice to the significant work she did between the pipes to hold off the Ephs.
Williams came out with intensity in the second half, taking four on-goal shots in a seven minute stretch.
At 55:55, Eisenhart released down the center of the field cutting past Lasell defenders to face Stickley alone. Stickley was up for the task making a phenomenal deflection save on a missile of a shot by Eisenhart.
Five minutes later, Eisenhart sliced down the left field to produce another one-on-one opportunity with Stickley which was punched away by the junior goalkeeper.
Williams finally took the lead after an exchange of passes in front of Lasell's net rendered Eisenhart's 12th goal of the season. Stickley initially stopped the offending shot, but a miscue on the save led the ball to trickle over the goal line.
Less than two minutes later, Wild padded the Ephs' lead collecting a cross from Bridget Gallagher (Cranford, NJ) on the left wing inside the eighteen and tucking the ball just inside the far post into the lower corner.
For the final mark of the contest, Hayley Cook (Virginia Beach, VA) carried the ball down the left sideline and slid a pass to a Kristine Nakada (Alameda, CA) who unloaded a hard shot to the top right corner of the Lasers' goal.
Sophomore goalie Ashley Parrelli (Marshfield, MA) took over the pitch for the final six minutes of the game, making one save in net.
Molly Clarke (Berlin, CT) played spectacular defense for the Lasers, and was aided in the back field by Tsakiris, Hessler, and Jill Greaney (Holyoke, MA). Harris lodged three of the Lasers seven total shots in the contest and freshman forward Jamie Osterberg (Monroe, CT) and Hessler each donned one shot-on-goal in the second half.
Ultimately, Williams outshot Lasell 24-7 throughout the contest, including 10 on-frame shots to Lasell's two. The Ephs will move onto the next round of the NCAA Tournament tomorrow, Sunday, November 14th, challenging Brandeis University at 1:00 p.m. at Marcus Field.
Lasell's concludes the 2010 campaign as the Great Northeast Athletic Conference Champions, a 14-4-3 overall record, and with their first ever trip to the NCAA Tournament.