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SMC Soccer: Belles win over Trine ends streak

Matt Unger | Wednesday, October 5, 2011

The Belles snapped a two-game skid Tuesday, thanks to a second half offensive surge led by senior Katelyn Tondo-Steele and junior Ashley Morfin. Following a scoreless first half, the two midfielders each scored goals in the first 13 minutes of the second half as Saint Mary’s hung on to beat Trine University 2-1.

In the first half, the Belles (7-4, 3-4 MIAA) controlled most of the scoring opportunities but failed to convert any opportunities into goals. They outshot the Thunder (3-7-1, 1-5-1) by a margin of 5-1 in the half and freshman goalkeeper Natalie Warner did not record any saves.

“Both teams attacked but never seemed to finish off the attack with a shot,” Belles coach Michael Joyce said. “[The scoreless half] was probably a combination of good defending and not executing the final pass or shot offensively.”

However, a mere three minutes into the second half, Tondo-Steele worked her way open in the top of the goal box and fired a left foot shot into the top right corner of the goal to give the Belles a 1-0 lead.

“Katelyn has scored some big goals for us this year, and today her goal was spectacular,” Joyce said. “She managed to find that big play that we were missing up to that point.”

The goal was Tondo-Steele’s fourth on the season, giving her the team lead in goals scored.

Less than nine minutes later, in the 58th minute of the match, the Belles were awarded one of their five corner kicks in the contest. Junior midfielder Maddie Meckes sent the kick toward Morfin in the goal box. Morfin’s shot then deflected off one of the many Trine defenders surrounding the goal and went into the back of the net for a 2-0 lead.

“[In the second half], we just kept working hard and pushing for the goal,” Joyce said. “We always felt like it was just a matter of time [before we took the lead].”

From that point on, the Thunder played more aggressively to try to make up the two-goal deficit. This approach paid off in the 79th minute when Thunder freshman Trisha King received a pass from sophomore Kristin Elliot and drilled the ball into the top left corner of the net to cut the Belles’ lead to one.

However, the Thunder would get no closer as freshman goalkeeper Chanler Rosenbaum, substituted into the game in the second half for Warner, registered two saves to preserve the lead. Trine was also unable to turn any of its five second half corner kicks into goals.

Though the Belles were facing one the MIAA’s better goalkeepers in Thunder senior Jen Wall, they were still able to score two goals. In a recent scoreless tie with MIAA-leading Alma College, Wall recorded 11 saves.

Saint Mary’s will play the second of three road games in five days Thursday at 7 p.m. against MIAA foe Hope College in Holland, Mich.

Contact Matt Unger at [email protected]