Women's Soccer Drops Season Opener to Misericordia, 1-0
SWARTHMORE, Pa. - It was a tough start to the 2012 season for the Swarthmore College women's soccer team (0-1), as a first half goal from Misericordia's Laura Roney proved to be the difference in the Cougars' 1-0 win over the Garnet in the first match of the Swat Kick Classic on Friday afternoon from Clothier Field Stadium.
The season-opening contest for both squads proved to be a competitive, hard-fought match in which each team's final statistics nearly mirrored each other. The Garnet dominated the opening 15 minutes of the match and got the first great scoring opportunity, as junior Megan Brock missed just over the crossbar after being set up perfectly in front of the goal.
Following the near strike from Brock, Misericordia (1-0) - a 2011 NCAA Tournament team - began to assert itself. The Cougars' up front duo of Roney and Sam Helmsetter created a flurry of scoring opportunities, including a pair of shots on goals in the 22nd and 23rd minutes. The Cougars finally converted in the 26th minute, as Roney scored from the right wing off a pass across the box from Megan Lannigan to make it a 1-0 game.
The Garnet finally settled down after the Cougars' run, and nearly equalized in the 30th minute. It was again Brock with the golden scoring opportunity, only this time she was denied by Cougar 'keeper Maureen Ciccosanti. Swarthmore managed two more scoring chances before the end of the half, but still trailed in 1-0 heading into the break.
In the second half, the Garnet continued to create scoring chances, this time thanks to the play of All-Centennial performer Emma Sindelar. The sophomore nearly scored in the 51st minute and step up another near-strike by senior Haley Most off an excellently-placed corner in the 52nd minute.
Unfortunately, Swarthmore could never find the equalizer in its season opener. Brock again came the closest to putting the Garnet on the board, missing just right of the goal in the 81st minute. The Cougars maintained possession over the final minutes of the contest, running out the clock to secure the 1-0 victory.
Freshman Reba Magier had a strong outing in her first collegiate start in goal, making four saves - including a one-on-one breakaway save in the 51st minute of play.
The Garnet return to action on Sunday when it hosts Wellesly in its final game of the Swat Kick Classic. Play is set to begin at 1:00 p.m.