Women’s soccer fighting for playoff position after tie with Holy Cross

Freshman forward Sara Oswald (30) scored the only goal for the Leopards against Holy Cross. (Photo courtesy of Athletic Communications)

The Lafayette women’s soccer team faced Holy Cross on Monday and earned a conference point with a 1-1 tie after two scoreless overtime periods. The game was initially scheduled for Sunday afternoon, but play was halted in the 56th minute after steady rain created unsafe field conditions.

Per NCAA rules, stopped contests that have not reached the 70th minute must be started over on a different day. This rule benefited the Leopards, who were trailing 1-0 in the 56th minute when gameplay stopped.

“I think the team showed a lot of strength and resilience against Holy Cross,” senior defender Caitlin Balmer said. “Considering the events of Sunday, the team definitely started out a little shaky and indecisive on Monday.”

Senior midfielder Abbie Bresnahan, who nearly scored the game-winner late in the second overtime, said that the stopped game on Sunday caused the team to come out “a little disjointed” in the first half but that the effort in the second half was better.

In Monday’s makeup game, the Crusaders once again struck first and took a 1-0 lead in the 35th minute. The Leopards netted the equalizer in the 60th minute when freshman forward Sara Oswald scored off an assist from junior forward Rebecca Schreiner.

“Sara’s goal really gave us a push and boost in the second half and kept us going into overtime,” said senior forward Alexa Buffa. “It was unfortunate we couldn’t get the win but coming out of there with a point was very important and I think the team played really hard overall.”

Lafayette currently sits in sixth place in the tightly packed Patriot League standings with just one conference game remaining. The top six teams will make the playoffs, so every point is crucial for the Leopards.

“It’s definitely an exciting position that we’re in right now, especially [since] everything is in our control,” Buffa said. “It’s these big games that matter a lot that we look forward to as athletes so we’re all just really excited about it…[we’re] just extremely focused and really clear on what we have to do.”

The season finale for Lafayette is against Boston University, who have already been eliminated from playoff contention.

“We are trying to focus on the obstacle ahead, which is beating BU, instead of letting any external factors get to us,” Bresnahan said. “If we show up and play to our potential, I have no doubt we will be successful.”

The Leopards host Boston University tomorrow at 2 p.m. for Senior Day.

About Andrew Hollander

Andrew Hollander ‘21 is the Managing Editor of The Lafayette. He studies psychology and Spanish.

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