Bucknell Women's Soccer Hosts Holy Cross, Army in Big Weekend of Patriot League Play
Oct. 4, 2012
For only the second time all season, Bucknell will be looking to end a losing streak. Last Saturday the Bison dropped their Patriot League opener at home against preseason favorite, and on Tuesday night they played well in a 3-1 away loss to No. 4 Penn State. While there is no shame in coming up short against either of those two outstanding teams, Bucknell is focused on securing points against Holy Cross and Army, particularly in a year when the Bison have to play their final three Patriot League games on the road.
Friday's matchup with Holy Cross will be an intriguing one, with Bucknell's resurgent offense going up against the Patriot League's top-ranked defense. The Bison rank third in the conference in goals scored with 24. That is 11 more than the Crusaders, but Holy Cross has allowed a league-low 12 goals on the season.
The Crusaders (5-5-1, 1-0 PL) got out to a great start in Patriot League play with last week's 1-0 home win over Army. It was Holy Cross' first win over the Black Knights since 1995. Sophomore Carly McCabe earned Patriot League Goalkeeper of the Week honors after making 12 saves against Army. It was her fourth shutout of the season. McCabe leads the Patriot League in saves per game (6.6), goals-against average (0.61) and save percentage (.914).
Gina Righini scored the Crusaders' goal against Army, and she is now tied for the team lead with eight points on three goals and two assists. Annie Galvin also has eight points, all coming from her team-high four goals. Megan Greineder leads the squad with three assists.
Holy Cross blanked Manhattan 1-0 just before the Army game, so the Crusaders come to Lewisburg on a two-game shutout streak. Their other wins this season have come against Wagner (4-1), Rhode Island (1-0) and Delaware State (3-0).
Bucknell and Holy Cross have met every season since 1991, and the Bison own a 15-5-2 series lead. The Bison have won the last seven meetings with Holy Cross, outscoring the Crusaders by a 22-5 margin. The teams have met once in the Patriot League Tournament, with Holy Cross winning 1-0 in the semifinals at Colgate in 2000.
Meanwhile, Army (5-7, 0-1 PL) has a tough weekend ahead with road games at Colgate on Friday and Bucknell on Sunday. The Black Knights have dropped three of their last four, but the win was a 3-2 decision over a good Columbia team on Sept. 23. Army has also beaten Seton Hall and Syracuse and played Iowa tough in a 2-1 loss.
Kim An, the 2010 Patriot League Rookie of the Year and a two-time NSCAA All-Region selection, and Joey Molacek both have four goals and two assists to lead the team in both categories. The only other multi-goal scorer is Anna Lail with two.
The Black Knights have scored 14 goals and allowed 19 on the season. Linda Rosas has started nine of the games in goal and has 43 saves and 12 goals against for a .782 save percentage. Jessia McAllister has made three starts, making 16 saves with seven allowed for a .696 save percentage. Rosas has both of the team's shutouts this season.
Army leads the all-time series 15-11-2. These two teams have played seven times in Patriot League Tournament games. The Bison won 2-1 in overtime at home in the semifinals in 2007, and Bucknell scored a 3-1 victory in the PL championship game in 2005. The most recent postseason meeting came in 2008, when the two teams played 110 minutes of scoreless soccer before Army went on to advance in penalty kicks.
Last season at West Point, Army prevailed 1-0 on Ruthie Rosenberger's 64th-minute goal. In the most recent meeting at Emmitt Field, the Bison dropped a 2-1 overtime heartbreaker. The Black Knights scored with 4:55 left in regulation to tie it, then scored 5:05 into overtime to win it.
Bucknell's most recent series win was a 1-0 verdict at West Point in 2009.
Bucknell's only other losing streak of any kind this season came against Binghamton and No. 23 Rutgers to start the year. The Bison put an end to that with a 3-1 win over Robert Morris, which started a four-game winning streak.
Chelsey Garkowski continues to pace the Bison in scoring with 17 points on seven goals and three assists. She ranks fifth in the Patriot League in both goals and points. Courtney Nelson assisted on Jenna Tryon's goal at Penn State on Tuesday, and she now has four goals and four assists for 12 points. Cassie Denger also has four assists along with two goals, while Kayla Yee, Evelyn Nicinski, Liz Dwornik and Danielle Piccirilli all have two goals. Tryon's goal against the Nittany Lions was her first of the season, giving Bucknell 10 different goal-scorers in 2012.
Sandita McDermott has won three Patriot League Goalkeeper of the Week awards this season, and she is coming off a spectacular game Tuesday at Penn State. She had 11 saves in that one, including a number of highlight-reel stops, and now has a league-high 71 stops on the season.
Following this weekend's action, Bucknell will host American on Oct. 13 at 1 p.m. That will be Senior Day at Emmitt Field.