SMC succumbs to first-half goal
Daniel O'Boyle | Monday, October 13, 2014
Saint Mary’s fell 1-0 to Kalamazoo by a single first-half goal Friday night.
Hornets senior midfielder Maria Rich dribbled past three Belles defenders into the box and placed the ball in the bottom corner to score the decisive goal for Kalamazoo (6-3-1, 9-3-1 MIAA) in the 26th minute.
The Belles’ (4-8-1, 2-6-1) best chances to equalize came late in the game. A well-placed pass in the 75th minute from sophomore midfielder Jenn Jarmy put sophomore forward Liza Felix through with only the goalkeeper to beat, but Felix’s shot went narrowly wide.
Saint Mary’s had two additional chances in the last minutes of the game, but Kalamazoo junior goalkeeper Lucy Mailing produced two saves. Mailing blocked both a long-range free-kick from senior defender Kerry Green and a free header deep inside the box from Felix.
Saint Mary’s coach Michael Joyce said he was impressed by the chances his team created and that the Belles were unfortunate to fail netting any goals.
“I was a little surprised we didn’t score, we created some great chances, so that was encouraging,” Joyce said.
Joyce said that narrow defeats were becoming a theme of the Belles’ season — with this being his team’s fifth defeat by a single goal in the 2014 campaign. He said he hopes that this run will soon come to an end.
“We’ve lost a lot of close games this year,” Joyce said. “We haven’t always been tight for 90 minutes, we’ve missed some good chances and haven’t gotten the right bounce when we needed it. It’s tough to lose so many close games when the teams are even, but we’ve got some competitive players who will keep pushing until it breaks our way.”
The Belles look to rebound from Friday’s defeat in their game against Alma today. Alma enters the match 8-4-1 overall and 6-3-1 in conference play, and Joyce said his team is prepared to top Alma for the first time in a while.
“We’re looking forward to Alma – they are the one team in the conference we haven’t beaten in the last few years – so hoping to break through that,” Joyce said.
The Belles travel to Alma, Michigan to face the Scots today at 4 p.m.