The Mercyhurst College women’s soccer team was in action twice this week at the Mercyhurst soccer field, welcoming Edinboro Universtiy and the nationally-ranked Indiana University of Pennsylvania.
The game against Edinboro started at a furious pace, and it was the visitors who stamped their authority from the get-go.
The Fighting Scots registered four shots before the Lakers could create an opportunity. The early pressure was converted into a goal when Edinboro sprung a breakaway attempt for a 1-0 lead.
The Lakers responded immediately, and they began to pick up the pace. The Edinboro defense managed to keep the ball out with the goalkeeper saving a string of chances. The teams arrived at the interval with the Lakers a goal down.
The second half picked up where the first had ended with the Lakers being the more dominant of the two teams.
A Lakers’ corner kick was cleared and Edinboro managed to direct the ball out to the left wing on the breakaway.
An audacious effort from Edinboro caught the Lakers keeper freshman Amanda John off guard and found its way to the back of the net.
At 2-0 down, the Lakers reverted to three in the backline in search of a lifeline. The Fighting Scots defense held firm though and closed out the game with a clean sheet.
Looking to bounce back from the loss to Edinboro the Lakers were faced with a tough task as No. 16 Indiana University of Pennsylvania came to Erie in search of a victory.
With Mercyhurst needing a result to get back on track and IUP cautious of giving up an early goal away from home, the two teams played conservative soccer throughout the first half and found themselves going in at halftime in a deadlock.
Though IUP had played the Lakers to a stalemate in the first session, it seemed as though Mercyhurst came out with renewed spirit in the second half.
They were rewarded for their more aggressive play in minute 58 when a free kick on the edge of the area was taken quickly. Midfielder Jessie Roberts stepped up and drilled the ball to the back of the net while the Crimson Hawks defense was getting back into position.
The euphoria of this strike was canceled out only a minute later when an IUP free kick was floated in from the left. This strike took a deflection and was turned into the Lakers’ goal to knot the score at 1-1.
The Lakers’ response was fast and effective as Danielle Braun found herself on the byline. Her cross found Molly Marsh at the back post, whose shot was saved but not covered. Marsh herself was quickest to react though slotting the ball away to put the Lakers on top once again.
Now the Crimson Hawks began to search for an equalizer. It came less than 3 minutes left with a ball from well outside the area finding the far top corner and levelling the game.
The two teams would play out two periods of overtime to no avail and the game ended in a tie.
This tie leaves the Lakers with a 4-3-1 overall record and a record of 4-1-1 in Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference play.
“The loss to Edinboro was a tough one to swallow; we threw everything at them but just couldn’t seem to find the back of the net. We battled very hard against IUP. We finished our chances but just fell short of the win. We need to work hard now and focus on getting back in the win column,” junior defender Jamie Schroter said.