HAMDEN, Conn. - Sophomore Murphee Greeley spearheaded an offensive charge with a career-high two goals to help lead the Lehigh women’s soccer team to a big 4-2 win at Quinnipiac on Friday. Two of the Mountain Hawks’ (2-2-1) goals came in the span of just 1:00 in the first half while the other two were scored in a quick 1:17 span in the second. Senior Genna Pepe and sophomore Paige Dyrek also added their first goals of the season in the victory.
“We came out with a lot of energy,” said Lehigh head coach Eric Lambinus. “I thought we played well and passed really well. We created chances and were able to convert those into four goals, but also had a bunch more opportunities to score. It’s great to score goals, get out to a lead and extend it in the second half.”
The four goals mark a season-high and most since scoring six vs. NJIT last October. It also doubles the Mountain Hawks’ goal total coming in; they had scored a single goal in each of their first four games.
The teams traded shots in the early going before three goals were scored in a 1:11 span, beginning in the 20th minute. Pepe got it started with her first of the season, making a sensational individual move before beating Quinnipiac goalkeeper Jill Kelley to the left post. Greeley then made it 2-0 exactly one minute later, dribbling past the defense before beating Kelley for her first goal of the game (and season).
It only took 11 seconds for the Bobcats to get one back as Kemesha Woodfine made a pass into the box, which Shauna Edwards one-timed past Lehigh goalkeeper Ashley Blanks to make it 2-1 at 20:50.
“It was good to score those two goals,” said Lambinus. “After scoring the second, we shut down for a second; we can’t do that. We let down and they came right back at us. We can’t give them that much space because they attack us right away. But it was nice to still have the lead going into halftime.”
Both sides settled in until the next goal, almost 30 minutes later. This time, it was Dyrek, scoring off a deflection from Kelley for some insurance at 50:23. The Mountain Hawks struck quickly once again as senior Jana Basubas found Greeley, who beat Kelley for her second of the game to give Lehigh a 4-1 advantage at 51:40.
Quinnipiac continued to battle and eventually got one back, but it wasn’t nearly enough. The Bobcats’ Fortuna Velaj was the benefactor, scoring off a deflection at 85:35.
“Defensively, I think we did well,” said Lambinus. “It was a hard game to play because we were able to attack and attack so much, but they were hitting at the counter attack. When we had the ball, we were getting numbers forward, but we were allowing a number of counters.”
The teams were even in shots with 19 apiece. After Lehigh held a 13-6 first-half edge, Quinnipiac came back to outshoot the Mountain Hawks, 13-8, in the second. The Mountain Hawks had seven corner kicks to the Bobcats’ four. Blanks finished with seven saves in a strong effort while Kelley stopped eight of Lehigh’s 12 shots on goal. The 12 shots on goal were the most by the Mountain Hawks’ since they had 13 against NJIT last season.
The Mountain Hawks continue their busy weekend on Sunday when they travel to NJIT to take on the Highlanders. Kickoff is set for 1 p.m.