This was the fourth loss of the season where the statistics fell in the Leopards favor or closer than the score would indicate. In a defensive battle, Lafayette was even with American in shots (8-8) and led in corners ( 6-3). If one were to look at the play in the middle 70 of the field it would be hard to decide who the better team was today. We all know however, it is goal scores which count and American came out ahead today.
American was to open the scoring at 28:33 into the first period, set up by a long pass and tip in by Jette Dieckmann for her first goal of the season. During that period Lafayette was to have two corners to American not having any. Those two corners unfortunately did not find the cage and were two of the three shots for the period. American also had three shots from the field.
With only 2 minutes having run off the clock in the second period Lafayette was to connect on one of its 4 corners of the period with Lisa van der Geest getting her second goal of the season assisted by Shanks and Colbourne. Fourteen minutes were to pass before American got their go ahead from Ann WaverlySpencer with a feed from Haley Bowcutt.
The clincher was to occur at 55:58 when American was awarded a penalty stroke which was planted by Rafaela Rubas, their leading scorer who had been stymied all game until then.
Lafayette had multiple corner opportunities towards the end of the game as American was to grab possession with seconds left and head for the corner to run out the clock.
Despite the loss there was a good effort from the Lafayette defense. Senior Meg Lillis was all over the field ball hawking and blocking and being a dominant defender against American’s quick starts and attempts to keep the ball in their offensive side of the field.
Anna Steps, Cody Hunsicker and Lisa van der Geest made life difficult all game for the American Eagles.
I have to acknowledge a classy move by the American coach Steve Jennings as he started his number two goal keeper for the first time today. Alexandra Morris was feted today in a senior day ceremony before the game. Counting todays action, she has only seen 130 minutes of action all season. She played the entire 70 minutes.
The Eagles are in the playoffs with their 5-1 league record as is Boston University at 5-0, who beat Lehigh today 6-0 eliminating them from competition. Meanwhile in Lewisburg, Bucknell defeated Holy Cross on a last minute goal 2-1 setting up a virtual playoff game next week between Holy Cross and Lafayette. The winner goes to the Patriot League playoffs.