Women’s soccer meets American in third Patriot League matchup – The Lafayette

Last Sunday, Lafayette women’s soccer (2-7-2 overall, 0-2-1 conference) traveled to the capital of our country to battle American University. The Leopards suffered a heartbreaking loss to Patriot League rivals Lehigh, trying to break their three-game losing streak. While they managed to break that streak, they were unable to prevail as the game ended in a 2-2 draw.

“After a tough loss to Lehigh on Wednesday, we needed to quickly regroup as a team and focus on this weekend’s American game,” senior forward Sara Oswald wrote in an email. “We had a really strong week of training, it was positive and focused and we traveled to DC very well. I think we were psychologically and physically prepared to get a good result from Sunday’s game.”

The goal began in the 28th minute when Lafayette midfielder April McDonald maneuvered past the American defenders and placed a shot in the left corner of the net to give the Leopards a 1-0 lead.

The Eagles responded just two minutes before halftime by forcing a shot past senior Lafayette goaltender Natalie Neumann to level the score at 1-1.

In the second half, Lafayette found himself back in the lead after a 76th-minute pass from McDonald resulted in a goal from Oswald, giving Maroon and White a 2-1 lead. The goal was also Oswald’s team-leading fourth of the year.

“I think the most memorable moments of the game were the team’s ability to react to goals conceded,” Oswald wrote. “It’s never easy to regroup after a goal, but our ability to continue our game from a defensive and offensive standpoint has been impressive.”

The game was tied again in the 83rd minute when American slid a shot past Lafayette’s junior goalie Lindsay Dewar. That goal was the product of an American corner kick that deflected several players before finding the back of the net. Neither team was able to prevail in the remaining seven minutes of the game as the game ended in a 2–2 draw.

Both Lafayette and American finished the game with six shots, four on target for each team. The Leopards were led by McDonald, who managed three shots, one of which resulted in a goal. Oswald had two shots, one of them a goal. Second midfielder and forward Alexa Jindal had a shot on target.

Neumann and Dewar evenly split time in goal for the Leopards, with Dewar making two saves.

One aspect of the game that didn’t show up in the stats was Lafayette’s defensive effort that kept the Leopards from a fourth straight loss.

“Our defensive block was so strong all season that we rarely conceded goals in the game,” Oswald wrote. “The same was true on Sunday, both goals scored against us were unfortunate results from crosses into the box and the rest of the game showed a disciplined defense that was almost impenetrable for American strikers.”

Despite this impressive defensive display, there is still room for improvement for Maroon and White as we look towards the rest of the season.

“What we could have done better, I think our game management could have been better considering we lost a one-goal lead twice. Better game management comes from the maturity of each member of the team,” Oswald wrote.

The Leopards are looking to claim their first Patriot League win of the season against the Loyola Maryland Greyhounds tomorrow at 2 p.m

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