Nelson's Goal, Solid Defense Lift Bucknell Women's Soccer to 1-0 Win over Buffalo
Aug. 31, 2012
LEWISBURG, Pa. - Courtney Nelson flicked in a corner kick in the 59th minute and the defense was rock solid all evening as the Bucknell women's soccer team defeated Buffalo 1-0 on Friday night at Emmitt Field. The Bison earned their first clean sheet of the season and won their second in a row to improve to 2-2 heading into a Sunday afternoon road tilt at St. Bonaventure.
Bucknell turned in a strong 90 minutes in all phases of the game to avenge a 1-0 road loss at Buffalo last season. Offensively, the Bison applied consistent pressure and had a number of dangerous situations throughout the evening, particularly in the second half when they scored once and had another beautiful goal waved off on an offsides call.
At the other end of the field, the Bulls (1-3-1) managed only five shots all night, only one of which required a save from goalkeeper Sandita McDermott, who earned her eighth career shutout.
"We got a really good sense of Buffalo in the first half, and I loved the way we responded," said coach Ben Landis. "We kept the pressure on them and then once we got the goal we were strong with the lead. We got some great minutes from our bench. They know their roles and are giving us great quality when they come in. Our back four was tremendous tonight, and they really kept the game clean. It was great to put together two good halves and get a clean sheet. Hopefully this will be a building block for us."
Ainsley Wheldon was strong in goal for Buffalo. She was credited with three saves, but she thwarted a number of other good scoring chances by coming off her line to break up crosses. Bucknell finally solved Wheldon with a ball sent to the near post just over 13 minutes into the second half. The Bison earned one of their seven corner kicks on the night, and Cassie Denger picked out Nelson, who flicked it in with her back to goal. Nelson, who scored her first career goal last Friday at No. 23 Rutgers, now has two goals in her last three games.
Chelsey Garkowski hit both a post and a crossbar in the second half, and then with about 10:30 to play Bucknell's best sequence of the night went for naught. Garkowski worked hard to win a ball on the left wing and chipped a perfect pass over two defenders to a streaking Kayla Yee. Yee hammered a sliding volley into the back of the net, but the linesman had the flag up.
Trailing 1-0 in the final half-hour, Buffalo had their only two decent looks of the night. Katie Roberts had the first one with 28 minutes to go when she maneuvered around a defender to tee up an 18-yard shot, but she launched it over the bar. About 14 minutes later, McDermott's only save of the night came on a hard, low shot off the foot of Kassidy Kidd.
Bucknell finished with a 16-5 shot advantage and led 7-3 in corner kicks. Nelson led the way with five shots, while Garkowski had four and Denger three.
Bucknell and St. Bonaventure will square off at 3 p.m. Sunday in Olean, N.Y. The Bison will be looking to avenge a 2011 1-0 loss for the second game in a row.