Saint Leo, Fla. (September 13, 2006) – The Saint Leo University women’s soccer team (6-0-1, 2-0 SSC) shut out the visiting Eckerd College Tritons (1-4-1, 0-1-1 SSC) Wednesday by a score of 5-0 in a Sunshine State Conference match at University Field.

Saint Leo freshman forward Hannah Beard (Liverpool, England) scored her first career hat trick to lead the Lions to the victory.  SLU midfielder Jennifer O’Connor (Jr., Fernandina Beach, Fla.) also added a goal and assist in the win, as the Lions remained unbeaten and won for the fourth consecutive match.

SLU held much of the possession in the early part of the match, creating a number of chances.  The pressure finally told in the 24th minute when a terrific ball from O’Connor found Bridget Godwin (So., Ocean Springs, Miss.) free down the right side.  Godwin sent a low cross into the area that was re-directed by Beard for the opening goal of the game.

O’Connor doubled the lead in the 39th minute when she was pulled down in the penalty area.  The resulting spot kick was smashed home by O’Connor for her fifth goal of the season.

After the half-time break, Beard was again on target in the 74th minute and rounded out her hat trick just two minutes later when she took a long ball over the top from goalkeeper Lauren Hudson (So., Odessa, Fla.) and slotted it home for her fifth goal of the season.

Lions’ defender Lizzie Seedhouse (Jr., Sheffield, England) completed the scoring in the 85th minute when she headed home a corner from Sara Macko (Fr., Brandon, Fla.) for her first goal of the campaign.

Saint Leo will have a six-day before its next match when the Lions will host the No. 7 ranked University of Tampa Spartans in a Sunshine State Conference match.  Opening kick-off for the September 19 match is scheduled for 7:00 p.m. and the game will be broadcast live on the SLU Athletics Audiocast Network.