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Women's Soccer Team Goes On the Road

By Melissa Hart

TEAM COACH

Women’s soccer started out the week on Tuesday, travelling to face the Babson Beavers. Babson, ranked seventh in New England, was protecting a season with only one loss.

The Engineers led throughout the contest. From the first whistle, it was evident that MIT had the advantage as they moved the ball around the chasing Babson players.

In Shirley Chan’s ’02 first game this season after a pre-season scrimmage injury, Chan made good use of her first few minutes on the game field. Kelli A. Griffin ’03 pushed a pass through the Babson defense that Chan pursued relentlessly, and finished with pure hustle.

Although MIT dominated play, the Engineers held only a one-goal lead at halftime. That lead would quickly widen though as defender Sheila E. Saroglou ’03 scored her first collegiate goal for the Engineers in the opening five minutes of the second half, with a header off of a Sarah K. Perlmutter ’02 corner kick.

Babson answered this goal three minutes later with a goal of their own, putting Babson in close striking distance. Though Babson began to put pressure on the MIT goal, Connie Yang ’03 shot down a number of Babson’s chances and racked up ten saves on the day, with six coming in the final twenty minutes of the game.

Candace N. Wilson ’04 beat two defenders and then the goalkeeper with ten minutes left for some added insurance for the victory.

MIT went away and defeated ranked Babson College 3-1 to improve to a 5-1 record.

MIT defeats Clark Cougars

Earlier in the week, MIT faced the Clark Cougars in a make-up game. Last season, Clark stole two close games from an aggressive MIT team, and though it appeared Clark might try the same trick this year, MIT’s perseverance paid off in an Engineer victory.

Although MIT had many opportunities to score early on, their only goal in the first half came from the powerful throw-in by midfielder Monica F. Morrison ’04 and subsequent header by Griffin.

Despite strong play and a halftime lead for the Engineers, Clark came out feisty and determined in the second half. Although MIT continued to move the ball adeptly, Clark’s aggressive play coupled with a MIT team complacent with their first half performance allowed Clark to score two goals.

MIT found themselves in the all too familiar circumstance with Clark: MIT was outplaying Clark, yet MIT trailed in the score, 2-1.

The Beavers remained composed, and continued a methodical and persistent attack that turned particularly dangerous with about eight and a half minutes to go in the match. Candace N. Wilson ’04 was fed a through ball, and worked hard to beat the defender. Wilson was able to keep control and shot a rocket past the Clark goalkeeper for the tying goal.

A minute later Wilson struck again as she assisted the strike with a lovely cross to Perlmutter. Perlmutter volleyed the cross emphatically into the goal. Clark was dumfounded as they went from victory to defeat in just over one minute.

Morrison punctuated the win with a last minute goal from Griffin’s feed through the middle.

Yang had five saves for MIT as they gained their sixth victory of the season with a 4-2 defeat of the Cougars.

Tech falls to Springfield

MIT dropped a game 3-1 on Saturday to Springfield College, the fourth ranked team in New England. MIT traveled to Springfield to take on the host Pride, and both teams were undefeated in the conference.

The match was a battle of scoring opportunities, and it began in quite promising fashion for the Engineers. Team high scorer Griffin connected on a corner kick in the second minute of play to put MIT ahead 1-0.

Although MIT led play for the next 25 minutes, Springfield’s dangerous counterattacks produced one goal for the Pride. The goal came from a corner kick and evened the score.

During the final 15 minutes of the first half, the game evened out entirely, and both teams saw top scoring opportunities turned away by either outstanding defender or goalkeeper play. The score at halftime was 1-1.

The second half the game continued to ebb and flow back and forth on the pitch. Springfield cashed in on a header off of another corner kick in the 61st minute.

Though MIT would still have a number of chances to score, they could not tie the game, and grew increasingly more frustrated.

Springfield showed composure down the stretch, and scored a sealing goal in the final fifteen minutes, taking advantage of some defensive confusion.

MIT never regained composure in the final stretch and walked away, taking a 3-1 loss.

Despite the loss and the three goals the Engineers allowed, middle defenders Rebecca E. Clinton ’03 and Saroglou stepped up and made numerous defensive stops of a dangerous Springfield attack.

Goalkeeper Yang recorded 11 saves despite having a hard collision with a Springfield player early in the first half.

MIT falls to 6-2 overall and 2-1 in the New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference after the Springfield loss. MIT’s next match is at home again Saturday, October 6, at 10:30 a.m.