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The Blue & Gray Press | October 20, 2017

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Homecoming Roundup: Eagles score big wins and suffer close losses

Homecoming Roundup: Eagles score big wins and suffer close losses
UMW Athletics

UMW Athletics

By CHRIS MARKHAM, MIKEY BARNES, HANNAH RIDDLE

Men’s Soccer

The University of Mary Washington men’s soccer team came into Saturday’s tilt against Capital Athletic Conference foe Wesley College riding a four-game win streak. In what was the most exciting, yet frustrating contest of the season, the Eagles came up short, losing to the Wolverines 3-2 in overtime.

UMW held a 1-0 lead at halftime after sophomore Riley Fisher found the back of the net at the 10:10 mark of the first half. The action picked up after halftime when the Wolverines scored two goals to take a 2-1 lead. Their first goal came less than two minutes into the second half, and the second came in at the 55:34 mark. Both goals were assisted by CAC Player of the Week Eman Amao.

Fisher came to the Eagles’ rescue less than two minutes after the Wolverines took the lead, scoring the game-tying goal to keep UMW’s hopes alive.

The Eagles had many chances to seal the win in regulation, peppering Wesley goalie Ryan Sanders with six shots on goal, including a shot that bounced off the inside of the goal-post. In the waning minutes of regulation, Fisher nearly completed a hat trick, but a controversial offside call negated the goal. The game was sent into overtime, and Amao netted the game-winner.

Despite the loss, the Eagles’ solid conference record will likely position them well in the CAC tournament, beginning on Saturday, Nov. 1.

 

Women’s Soccer

The University of Mary Washington women’s soccer team came away with a 3-1 victory this Saturday, Oct. 25 in their homecoming game against Penn State Harrisburg.

Throughout the game, UMW dominated offensively, totaling 23 shots on goal, compared to Penn State Harrisburg’s single attempt.

Despite the team’s efforts, however, the score remained tied 0-0 at halftime. Penn State Harrisburg was the first to make it on the scoreboard early in the second half. Two minutes in, a shot from Penn State Harrisburg freshman Kylie Courtney, taken from the left corner of the penalty box, found the back of the net.

But UMW resurged nine minutes later when freshman Taylor Decker crossed the ball to Maryfay Jackson, who put it away for the tying goal.

“The first thing I thought was ‘good thing I was in the right spot at the right time,’” Jackson said. “PSH’s goal early on in the second half was the kick in the butt that we needed to get in our heads that something needed to change. Collectively we worked to get one in the back of the net.”

Later, with 7:56 remaining, Decker made another impressive assist to junior Lizzie West, who scored from the top of the box to pull UMW ahead. Shortly after, at 5:17, Decker headed in one last goal to secure a UMW victory.
“Sam [Lockley] sent in a perfect cross right to my head, and all that was left for me to do was redirect it into the goal,” Decker said. “Our composure inside and around the box helped us a lot. We really came together as a team, and we decided that we would do whatever it took to win the game.”

UMW faced a win-or-go-home scenario on Tuesday, needing a win against Wesley College in order to secure a berth in the CAC tournament, which they did with a 1-0 victory. They will now play the third-seed in the tournament on Saturday.
“We made changes and brought the energy we needed,” said midfielder Maggie Gallagher as she stood on the UMW bleachers after the game in the midst of celebrating students and blue and white t-shirts.

“It made homecoming that much better,” teammate Emily Bloom added.

 

Volleyball

The University of Mary Washington women’s volleyball team broke out their broomsticks on Saturday as they completed a home sweep of Penn State Harrisburg and Virginia Wesleyan. These three teams competed against one another throughout Saturday, Oct. 25 during UMW’s homecoming festivities. The lady Eagles defeated Penn State Harrisburg and Virginia Wesleyan with little problems, securing their first 20-win season since 1997.

Beginning at 1 p.m., UMW took on the Lions of Penn State Harrisburg, who entered the weekend with a 1-21 record. UMW wasted no time, winning the first set by an easy 25-11 margin. After switching benches, similar success continued as the Eagles put up scores of 25-15 and 25-14, taking their first match with an easy 3-0 score.

Freshman Dani Fiore led the way for the eagles with ten kills, and junior Emma Murphy followed closely behind Fiore with seven kills and five blocks of her own. After UMW’s debacle of Penn State, the Lions of Harrisburg took on Virginia Wesleyan College, where they faced similar struggles as they yet again fell 3-0, dropping to 1-23 on the season.

UMW and VWC faced off in what was expected to be an evenly matched duel, as both teams came into the showdown with similar records. The Eagles started the first set out on a 15-8 hot streak, and they did not slow down as they took the first set 25-15. UMW continued to blow past VWC with a quick 17-10 lead in the second set on route to a 25-12 defeat. The Eagles’ success could not be stopped as they scored eight straight points to take an 8-1 lead in the early parts of the final set. While the VWC rally slowed the lady Eagles down, UMW eventually prevailed to a 26-16 victory. The Eagles completed their second sweep of the day and received their ninth win in their last 10 games.

UMW improved to 21-9 on the season and will take on conference foe Christopher Newport University on Thursday, Oct. 30 in their breast cancer awareness game.

 

Field Hockey

The Eagles’ 16th ranked field hockey team put their undefeated Capital Athletic Conference record on the line in a critical road contest against the top ranked team in the nation, Salisbury University. Despite heroic efforts on both sides of the ball, the University of Mary Washington fell to the Sea Gulls 6-5 in overtime on Homecoming Saturday.

After trailing 3-0 in the first half, the Eagles made a furious comeback, scoring back-to-back goals less than three minutes apart to draw within one goal of the Sea Gulls. However, Salisbury put one more in the back of the net before the end of the first half to lead 4-2.

UMW came out of halftime on fire, scoring two goals a minute apart from each other in the opening minutes of the second half. The two CAC powerhouses exchanged goals to end regulation knotted up at five goals each.

Salisbury wasted no time, scoring the game-winning goal just 3:35 into the extra period on their home turf.

Despite the loss, the Eagles’ strong effort against No. 1 Salisbury will likely propel them up the national rankings.

The UMW field hockey team now prepares for the CAC tournament, looking to secure a spot in the NCAA tournament for the first time since 2012, when they made it to the Final Four.