Jeffs, Ephs Play to Scoreless Draw

jacksongibson1Contact: Ben Badua

BOX SCORE

WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. - For the second time this season, the Amherst women’s soccer team played a NESCAC opponent to a scoreless tie, earning a 0-0 double-overtime draw against archrival Williams on Saturday afternoon.

With goals at a premium this season, the Jeff defense posted its fourth-consecutive clean sheet to start 2013 as Amherst moved to 2-0-2 overall and 1-0-2 in conference play. With all three conference tilts this season going to overtime, Amherst has managed just one goal in three league matches.

Generating the game’s first quality scoring chance, Audrey Thomas ’17 gained possession in the midfield before sending a through-ball to Kristi Kirshe ’17. Dribbling the ball into the box, the forward looked to goal, but sent the shot wide. Minutes later, Maddie Swarr ’17 found the foot of Katie Wardlaw ’17 with a cross to the right post, but the try veered off target as the game remained scoreless.

With time winding down in the first half, Amherst threatened to break the deadlock. Collecting the ball after a give-and-go just outside of the 18-yard box, Emma Rothkopf ’14 ripped a shot on goal, but junior netminder Hannah Van Wetter ’15 snagged the try to keep it level heading into the intermission.

Midway through the second stanza, Williams’ Gabby Suarez ’17 nearly put Williams on the board, but Jeff goalkeeper Holly Burwick ’16 punched the ball out of bounds at the far post to preserve the shutout. Moments later, Carla Nicasio ’14 also tested Burwick with an opportunity from the left side of the box, but the sophomore knocked the shot over the crossbar.

With just under 10 minutes to play, Amherst moved into the attacking third. Getting behind the defense, Sarah Duffy ’14 slotted a pass to Chloe McKenzie ’14 inside the box, but Van Wetter slid to the ball, breaking up the play before the forward could put a shot on net. Inside of three minutes, McKenzie played a cross to Rothkopf on the far post, but Van Wetter was again there to turn Amherst away.

Still scoreless after the first overtime, Duffy looked to make something happen in the second extra session. Coming off her line, Van Wetter knocked down the senior’s pass toward McKenzie, but could not maintain possession. With the ball loose in front, Williams’ defense cleared it out of danger. Switching fields, Thomas quickly transitioned to the offensive end, but Burwick hauled in her shot attempt as the game ended in a scoreless draw.

Williams finished with a 13-12 shot advantage as both teams earned six corners. Burwick made five saves in the win, while Van Wetter collected seven stops.

The Jeffs return to action on Saturday, Sept. 28 against Tufts.