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SMC Soccer: Win over Albion ends losing streak

Observer Staff Report | Thursday, October 27, 2011

After being outscored 12-1 in a losing streak against the top four teams in the MIAA, the Belles caught a break Wednesday, capturing a 2-1 victory against a winless Albion squad.

Led by goals from sophomore forward Jordan Diffenderfer and sophomore midfielder Mollie Valencia, Saint Mary’s (9-9, 5-9 MIAA) snapped its losing streak and held on to beat the Britons (0-17-1, 0-13-1).

From the outset of the game, the Belles held the advantage in number of corner kicks, and they finally converted in the 40th minute of the game to break the scoreless tie. Senior midfielder Taylor Paton lofted a corner kick past the Briton goalkeeper where Diffenderfer stood waiting for the ball. Diffenderfer sent a wide-open shot into the back of the net for her team-leading sixth goal of the season. The sophomore has also converted a team-high 26 percent of her shots into goals.

The Belles continued pressuring the Britons’ defense in the second half, and in the 67th minute, they were awarded a penalty kick when sophomore forward Kaitlin Teichman was fouled inside the goal box. Valencia took the penalty kick for Saint Mary’s, drilling it past the goalkeeper to give the Belles a 2-0 lead.

Less than one minute later, Britons forward Lindsey Lubanski arced a free kick from over 30 yards out below the crossbar to cut the Belles’ lead in half. The goal was only the second shot on goal, and would prove to be the final one for the Britons as the Belles retained possession of the ball for most of the game. Saint Mary’s outshot Albion by a margin of 19-8, including an 11-4 tally in the second half.

Although the Belles are out of contention for the MIAA playoffs and sitting in sixth place in the conference, a .500 record is an improvement from the previous three seasons in which they won a combined nine games. Furthermore, the Belles have an opportunity to finish the season with a winning record if they can beat a three-win Trine team and upset fourth place Hope in their final two home games.

The Belles will look to win on Senior Day this Saturday as they face Trine at home at 11 a.m.