(Joliet, Illinois) The women's soccer team took on the Fighting Saints of the University of St. Francis Tuesday night.
The Fighting Saints were carrying a 6-4 record (1-1 CCAC) record into play Tuesday night and came out firing in front of the home crowd of over 100 as soon as the game started. St. Francis recorded four shots and a corner kick against Holy Cross within the first five minutes of the first half.
Senior goalkeeper Ashleigh Lemp (South Bend, Indiana) kept her head on a swivel and allowed no goals and 3 saves in the first half.
Holy Cross gained some momentum around the 18th minute with two corner kicks and a number of shots on goal by Cassie Juarez (South Bend, Indiana).
Most of the first half was the back-and-forth variety, with each team showcasing offense and defense, and there was no real scoring threat until right before halftime when St. Francis' Debbie Rios shot attempt hit off the post, thus ending the half scoreless.
Holy Cross recorded 5 shots in the opening half opposed to 8 by St. Francis.
In the second half, St. Francis came out of the locker room swinging, recording 7 shots and 2 corner kicks within a 13 minute span compared to one shot by Holy Cross. It was the eleventh shot, however, that made the difference. St. Francis went up 1-0 in the 58th minute courtesy of Kaley Marciniak's first goal of the season for the Fighting Saints.
Holy Cross came right down the field afterwards in the form of sophomore Haley Craig (Granger, Indiana) and put a shot on the St. Francis goalkeeper.
The Saints never matched St. Francis' intensity in the second half, going down 2-0 just four minutes later on a goal by Brooke Polus of the Fighting Saints.
It was all USF the rest of the way, as Holy Cross put on no real pressure for the remainder of the game. Amber Zukowski added a third goal for St. Francis for good measure in the 87th minute, and that was how the game concluded.
Holy Cross finished the game with 8 shots, 2 corner kicks, and 8 saves credited to Ashleigh Lemp.
The loss leaves the Saints with a 1-6-1 record (0-2 CCAC).
The Saints are back to work Thursday, September 29th at Andrews University.
Start time is 5:00 PM.