Women's Soccer and Pilgrims play to tie

Shannon Kelley

LEICESTER, Mass. --- The Becker College women's soccer team opened their 2018 New England Collegiate Conference (NECC) schedule with a 0-0 double-overtime tie at home against visiting New England College (NEC) on Saturday morning at Alumni Field in Leicester.

September 15, 2018
Alumni Field, Leicester
Score: New England College 0, Becker 0 2OT
Records: New England College (2-4-1, 0-0-1 NECC) | Becker (2-2-2, 0-0-1 NECC)

New England College dominated possession for much of the first half, outshooting Becker 12-3 and keeping the ball in Hawk territory. With four minutes left in the half, Becker finally got an opportunity to score when they were awarded a corner kick taken by senior midfielder Maria Colon (Wharton, N.J. / Morris Hills). But a header shot from sophomore midfielder Shannon Kelley (Bellingham, Mass. / Blackstone Valley Technical) went high and the Pilgrims escaped. Then with 20 seconds remaining, NEC had an excellent chance to get on the scoreboard when freshman forward Alexa Zayas (Lynn, Mass./Lynn English) evaded the Hawk defense and got the goalie one-on-one on the left side. But Becker freshman goalkeeper Lyndsey Cobb-Wilkins (Elmira, N.Y. / Elmira) was up to the challenge, recording the save and immediately falling on the ball to keep the game scoreless going into halftime. It was one of seven saves Cobb-Wilkins tallied before the break.

In the second half, both teams raised their level of aggression, but they continued to see their scoring attempts go awry. With 27 minutes left in regulation, Becker sophomore midfielder Arianna Calouro (East Providence, R.I. / East Providence) put a corner kick in front of the NEC net but a shot from Kelley went wide. Two minutes later, NEC senior forward Michaela Pomeroy (Thetford, Vt./Thetford) beat two Becker defenders but shot wide right, and the game remained scoreless. In the closing three minutes of the half, the Pilgrims tallied six shots on goal, but Cobb-Wilkins remained stalwart, and the game would go into overtime.

In the 94th minute, Becker had another golden opportunity slip through their fingers when leading-scorer senior forward Lindsey Keith (Sutton, Mass. / Sutton), stymied up until that point in the game, shot just wide left off a free kick from 25 yards out. NEC answered again with a flurry of shots on goal in the closing minutes, only for Cobb-Wilkins to answer the bell once more, and the game went into double-overtime.

Then With 5:10 remaining in the second overtime, the Pilgrims nearly ended the game when Pomeroy put a perfect cross from the right side to a wide-open senior forward Tara Bainbridge (South Hadley, Mass./South Hadley) right in front of the net. But the kick when above the crossbar as the game remained scoreless. NEC had a corner kick in the closing seconds, but Cobb-Wilkins deflected the shot and the game ended in a tie.

• The Pilgrims outshot the Hawks for the game, 36-7.
• Cobb-Wilkins finished the day with a career-high 17 saves for Becker, while senior goalkeeper Kayla Pugliese (Mamaroneck, N.Y./Rye Neck) tallied two stops in total for NEC.
• Pomeroy had a game-high 11 shots for the Pilgrims, while Kelley led the Hawks with three.
• It was the first NECC league game ever for New England College, who is in their first year in the conference. Becker was a founding member of the league.
• In their last ten overtime games in program history dating back to 2014, Becker has only one loss, with a 4-1-5 record.

The Hawks are back on the field on Wednesday when they host cross-county rival Nichols College in a 4:00 p.m. game. The Pilgrims will play their next game at Castleton University on Tuesday for a 7:00 p.m. game.

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