October 14, 2012

Women's Soccer Hangs With 12th-Ranked Amherst in Conference Setback

AMHERST, Mass. - The 12th-ranked Amherst College women's soccer team scored the most goals Bowdoin has allowed this season in a 4-1 decision for the Jeffs on Sunday afternoon.

Amherst improved to 9-1-1 (6-1-1 NESCAC) with the win, while the Polar Bears fell to 9-3-0 (5-3-0 NESCAC).

Kate Sisk and Meghan Kim led the way for Amherst, each tallying a goal and an assist. Juniors Amanda Brisco and Sarah Duffy also scored for the Jeffs, while Kathryn Nathan notched a pair of assists to bring her league-leading total to nine. Audrey Phillips sent in the lone Bowdoin goal on a helper from Alexa Yurick midway through the second half.

Battling a slippery pitch on Sunday, Bowdoin found the first strong opportunity just two minutes in on a cross from Yurick on which Phillips got a good foot, but her shot was within the reach of a diving Holly Burwick.

Amherst immediately answered when Nathan found space on the right side and sent a swift cross into the box for her co-captain, Sisk. The junior controlled the pass then blasted a hard left past the diving keeper and into the top right corner for a 1-0 Jeff lead. The Jeffs nearly added to the lead when Mel Stier found Duffy with a well-placed header, but Bowdoin goalie Bridget McCarthy made a nice save on her shot.

Late in the half Kim gave Amherst some breathing room, corralling a loose ball on the left side of the box and blasting it past McCarthy. Amanda Kinneston nearly drew Bowdoin within one in the 43rd as she beat Shepherd with some nifty footwork, but Burwick made another nice save, diving to control the spinning shot from the left side and keep the Amherst lead at 2-0 heading into halftime.

Immediately challenging the Jeff lead, Bowdoin started the second period with a strong attempt when Jamie Hofstetter found space for a long run down the right side then sent a cross to Morgan Woodhouse at the top of the box, but her blast flew high of the Amherst net.

Amanda Brisco gave the hosts a 3-0 lead with a goal at 57:48 and nearly scored another two minutes later when Cooper took a shot off the left post that rebounded to Brisco. Still on the ground after diving for Cooper's attempt, McCarthy made a brilliant save, lunging to her left to control Brisco's rebound shot.

Bowdoin found their first tally in the 69th minute, when a cross from Yurick found Phillips in space on the left side of the box and she popped it over the fingertips of a leaping Burwick.

Seizing some momentum, the Polar Bears nearly cut Amherst's lead to one when Phillips got space for a one-on-one with Burwick. She got the ball past the Amherst netminder, looking for Turner on the right side, but the Bowdoin forward was whistled offside.

Shortly thereafter, McCarthy made a diving save of a Cooper header to keep the Polar Bears within striking distance, but it proved to be the final stop of the day for the Bowdoin keeper, as Louise Johnson took over in goal for her following the play. McCarthy finished with six saves. Sisk added a late goal to close out the scoring at 77:01.

Despite the final score, Bowdoin played the Jeffs tight - Amherst held a 21-17 edge in shots and 8-5 lead in corner kicks.