SAINT LEO, Fla. – The sixth-ranked Saint Leo University women's soccer team handed No. 10 Rollins College their first loss of the season, breaking a ten-game shutout streak and keeping their unblemished record intact as they defeated the Tars 2-0 on Friday evening at University Field.
The Lions advance their mark to 11-0-1, and 4-0-1 in Sunshine State Conference action, and move into sole possession of first place in the conference standings. Rollins swallows their first defeat of their 2011 campaign, and dips to 9-1-1, and 4-1-0 in SSC play.
The Green and Gold used an electrifying first half to get a jump on their opponent, scoring their goals in the 18th and 20th minutes. Ari Foreman fired the game-winning tally past Rollins keeper Michelle Dillingham at the 17:42 mark, notching the first goal scored against Dillingham this season. Foreman put the Lions on the scoreboard after grabbing a cross into the box from Jasmine Johnson, and then beating her defender for a solid shot on center frame.
Saint Leo roared back two minutes later and the Lions secured their two goal advantage as Cassie Barbaresi and Johnson teamed-up to make things happen. Barbaresi won first touch off of a Rollins goal kick and slotted the ball through to Johnson, who beat three defenders and blasted the shot off of Dillingham's fingertips with 19:59 on the clock for the second tally of the game.
The first half came to a close with the Lions holding onto the two-goal lead, and hunkered down throughout the second stanza on defense to hold the Tars at bay. Stalwart defensive play from Francesca Williams, Line Pedersen, Aija Bent-Trinder, and Johnson helped thwart the Tars' runs, while a strong performance from midfielders Sam Butterbaugh, Alicia Schuering, Sherrie Gessin, and Barbaresi helped turn away Rollins' attempts at goal.
Laura Carstens earned her fourth shutout of the season thanks to a seven-save performance on the evening. The Horsens, Denmark native made four clutch saves in the first half, with the Lions posting one team save, to help hold their opponent silent, and set aside three more shots in the second period to keep the Tars off the scoreboard.
After 90 minutes, the Tars led the shot count, 13-6, and had more opportunities on corner kicks, 8-5. But the Lions' eight saves to Rollins' three truly helped make the difference in the final score.
The Lions return to action on Tuesday, October 11, when they host NAIA powerhouse Lindsey Wilson College. Kickoff against the Blue Raiders is set for 7 p.m. at University Field. For the latest news, updates, and information on the Saint Leo women's soccer team, visit SaintLeoLions.com.