Posted: October 23, 2009
BETHLEHEM, Pa. – Lehigh held a commanding 22-4 advantage in shots, but Navy capitalized on its two best chances of the night as the Midshipmen picked up a 2-1 win over the Mountain Hawks on a wet Friday night at the Ulrich Sports Complex. The Mids scored on their only two shots on goal on the evening and withstood a Lehigh rally in the final ten minutes to improve to 12-3-2 overall and 3-1-1 in the league. Senior Liz Carlos scored her fourth goal of the season for the Mountain Hawks, who fall to 7-4-5 overall and 1-2-2 in league games.
“Tonight’s game was about being opportunistic,” said Lehigh head coach Manny Oudin. “Navy only had two chances and they took advantage of those opportunities.”
Things started well for the Mountain Hawks, who had the better of possession early on and fired the first eight shots of the half. Navy went in front on its first quality chance of the night in the 40th minute as Brittany Fruin’s through ball found Carissa Youker who beat Lehigh’s defense and managed to stay onside before sliding the ball past junior Lauren Mains for her eighth goal of the season.
Lehigh outshot Navy 12-2 in the opening half but went into halftime down 1-0.
“We played good soccer in the first half,” explained Oudin. “As much of the possession as we had, we need to play with more urgency in the final third and take some chances.”
In the second half the Mids added a second goal in the 53rd minute on a perfectly placed shot from Christine Calderon from just outside the 18-yard box to the upper right corner of the net. The goal was Calderon’s fifth of the season.
Lehigh continued to push for offense as the second half progressed and cut its deficit in half in the 84th minute as the Mountain Hawks capitalized on a free kick from just outside the box and Carlos worked the ball through congestion in front for the goal which gave Lehigh its first goal in just over 313 minutes of play.
The Mountain Hawks continued to push for an equalizer in the final minutes. Lehigh won several free kicks deep in the Navy third of the field but on two occasions Carlos’ strike sailed just over the crossbar.
Carlos led all players with eight shots on the night, while junior Lena Cannon added six for the Mountain Hawks. Youker had two of Navy’s four shots on the night. Corner kicks were even with each side winning two. The Mids were whistled for nine fouls while the Mountain Hawks were called for three.
Beth Reed made seven saves to earn the shutout for the Midshipmen, while Mains did not make a save for the Brown and White.
The loss leaves Lehigh five points out of fourth place in the league standings with two matches to play. The Mountain Hawks will need to win their last two games, plus get some outside help, to make the Patriot League tournament.
“I know we’re playing good soccer,” said Oudin. “We need to do better in the final third offensively. I think we understand what’s at stake and we will be motivated to come out and play well against American on Sunday.”
The Mountain Hawks return to the pitch Sunday when they host American at 1 p.m. The game can be seen live online at Lehighsports.com.
Mountain Hawks Soccer Post-Match Extra