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Belles soccer drops pair of games on road

The Saint Mary’s Belles traveled to southern Indiana on Friday to face Hanover College in a tough match, ultimately conceding in a 1-0 game against the Panthers. This marked the team’s second loss of the season, putting them at a 0-2-2 overall record. 

The game was even more proof of the offensive struggle the Belles have been facing since the beginning of the season. The defense, however, was on their toes throughout the match, with sophomore goalkeeper Riley Lindsey making 20 saves, the first time in nearly 20 years that an SMC goalkeeper has done so.

Hanover was able to amount 21 shots on goal, while Saint Mary’s was only able to put 3 on goal. After a little over 50 scoreless minutes, Kenna Patterson of the Panthers gave Hanover the winning goal, and the Belles were unable to catch up during the remaining time. 

The Belles stayed in central Indiana over the weekend, facing the DePauw Tigers in Greencastle on Sunday.  The match started off competitively and DePauw tested the Saint Mary’s defensive line throughout the first half, but the Belles successfully kept the ball out of their own goal for the majority of the match. 

In the 85th minute, Saint Mary’s freshman Felicity Matthews scored the first goal of the match, her first collegiate goal, putting the Belles up 1-0. The lead was short-lived, however, as the Tigers scored and tied the game less than a minute later, and quickly scored another goal to end the game 2-1 for a DePauw victory. The second loss of the weekend dropped the Belles’ record to 0-3-2. 

Sunday’s match marked the third this season in which the Belles have scored first but ended up tied or on the losing end.

“I can’t ask for more from the girls on the defensive side, as I believe they are doing an outstanding job, we are getting very unlucky this season with goals conceded,” head coach Farkhod Kurbonov said. “We will keep working on perfecting our shape and game plan.” 

The team has scored three goals total this season, two of which have been scored by senior Jillian Bowen. “Jillian is a fantastic player and the leader of this team on and off the field. [She will be} soon joining the University of Notre Dame for the School of Engineering,” Kurbonov said. “During practices and film sessions, we are working on exploring other areas to score from, also we are happy to have some of our attacking girls back after their injuries this coming week.” 

Saint Mary’s will be hosting their next three matches, starting off against Franklin on Thursday, Sept. 15.

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