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Women's Soccer Holds Off Nichols for First Conference Win

Women's Soccer Holds Off Nichols for First Conference Win

BOSTON, Mass. - The Wentworth Institute of Technology women's soccer team put three goals in the back of the net in the first half to slide past the Bison of Nichols College, 3-2, on Saturday afternoon at Sweeney Field.

The Leopards earn their first victory in Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC) play at 1-1-1 and improve to 6-4-2 overall. The Bison are still in search for their first conference win, and drop to 0-4 against league opponents, and 3-8-1 this season.

The Leopards dominated possession in the first half, which held a majority of their offensive action, as they would net three goals from three different players. Senior Grace McGrath (Warwick, R.I.) opened the scoring in the ninth minute from off a deflected cross from junior Jess Poratti (Essex Junction, Vt), which slid right into the far-post netting. Just four minutes later, sophomore Emma daSilva (Lowell, Mass.) scored her second goal of the season, bending a corner kick just past Nichols' keeper Brooke Downey (Middleboro, Mass.) for the 2-0 lead. The Leopards added an insurance goal in the 27thminute from sophomore Molly Donahue (Quincy, Mass.) for her third goal on the season, finishing off a long free kick from junior Alexis Stickelman (East Northport, N.Y.) to cap off Wentworth's scoring. 

Nichols had multiple offensive chances in the first half, as freshman Madison Clark (Tolland, Conn.) was denied on a penalty kick attempt at 32:15 followed by an incredible follow-up save from Leopards' senior keeper Christie Fleming (Braintree, Mass.). Despite the Leopards' solid defensive line, Nichols broke the clean sheet at 41:38 off the foot of graduate student Megan Dunn (Dudley, Mass.) for her fourth goal on the season, assisted by freshman Kaylin Goncalves (Norwood, Mass.).

Down but not out, the Bison found the back of the net in the 81stminute, as senior Brittany Busco (Agawam, Mass.) lofted a shot that skimmed Fleming's fingertips to bring the game within one, 3-2. This is as close at the Bison would come, as the Leopards shut them down for the game's remainder.

Fleming denied five shots in the win and improves to 5-3-2 in net for the Leopards. Downey had one save in the loss, and falls to 3-8-1 for Nichols, while freshman keeper Olivia Marcantonio (North Smithfield, R.I.) made four saves in second-half relief. 

The Leopards resume conference play on Tuesday October 9that Sweeney Field versus Western New England at 4:00 PM.

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