Hicks scores twice to lead Panthers to win
PLYMOUTH, N.H. – Freshman Sarah Hicks (Sutton, Mass.) scored a pair of goals to lead Plymouth State University to a 3-1 win over Rhode Island College in a Little East Conference (LEC) women's soccer game at Arold Field on Wednesday evening.
After a scoreless first half the Anchorwomen took a 1-0 lead in the 51st minute. The Panthers responded to tie the game three minutes later on Hicks' first goal, and in the 83rd minute senior Tabitha Josefik (Manchester, N.H.) put the hosts in front with her first career tally. Hicks secured the win with her second marker of the game in the 88th minute.
With the win Plymouth State moves to 5-2-1 and 1-2 in Little East play, while RIC drops to 3-6-0 and 1-2 in league action.
Plymouth State 3, Rhode Island College 1
Plymouth State 5-2-1, 1-2 LEC
Rhode Island College 3-6-0, 1-2 LEC
How it Happened:
* Although the game remained scoreless through the first half, both teams had excellent opportunities. RIC senior Olivia Capraro (North Providence, R.I.) split a pair of defenders and flicked the ball to sophomore Brooke Young (West Warwick, R.I.) on the right side. Young came crashing into the box but junior Caitlin Catania (Billerica, Mass.) came in from behind to break up the play.
* The Anchorwomen had another opportunity in the 22nd minute when sophomore Soleil Galagarza (Pawtucket, R.I.) played a ball through the box to Capraro. Capraro blasted a shot from ten yards out, but freshman goalkeeper Cat Robbins (Franklin, Mass.) went to the ground to make the stop.
* Not to be outdone, RIC's junior goalkeeper, Erica Edwards (North Kingstown, R.I.), made three great first half plays to keep the Panthers off the board. Freshman Taylor Siewierski (Colebrook, N.H.) sent junior Megan Toman (Killingworth, Conn.) on a breakaway in the 32nd minute, but Edwards came off her line to smother the opportunity.
* Junior Keegan Burch (Nashua, N.H.) sent a pair of beautiful through balls just before the half expired. The first, a chip from midfield over the RIC defense, led to another chance for Toman, but Edwards just beat her to the ball. A minute later Burch lofted a ball to freshman Jordan Meier (Holderness, N.H.), who headed it past a defender near the top of the box. Meier charged in but again Edwards got to the ball first.
* RIC broke through in the 51st minute. A ball sent in from the left corner of the box deflected off a Panther defender to Capraro at the top of the box and she one-timed it low to the left corner.
* Hicks tied the game just over three minutes later. Senior Sabrina Sweeney (Raymond, N.H.) inserted a corner kick to Catania, who headed it to Hicks on the far post. Hicks settled the ball before firing a shot to the left side.
* After withholding a surge from the Anchorwomen, Josefik put the Panthers in front for good in the 83rd minute. Junior Amy Luther (Westerly, R.I.) blasted a shot from 45 yards out that short hopped Edwards. The ball squirted away and deflected off a RIC defender to Josefik, who deposited it into the open net.
* Hicks put the icing on the cake less than five minutes later. Freshman Lizzy Bloch (Los Angeles, Calif.) volleyed a ball to the six yard box and Hicks ran on to touch it just past Edwards for her fifth goal of the year.
Inside the Numbers:
* Robbins matched a career-high with eight saves, improving to 3-1 on the season. Edwards, who also had a strong game coming off her line multiple times in the first half, fell to 1-5.
* With her five goals, Hicks is just one behind sophomore Mallory Lloyd (Hartland, Vt.) for the team lead.
* The Panthers have allowed one goal or less in seven of eight games.
* RIC held a 13-11 advantage in shots and limited the Panthers to just one shot in the first half. PSU fired ten shots in the second half.
* PSU improves to 19-9-1 against the Anchorwomen since the 1995 season, and exacted some revenge after RIC topped the Panthers 2-0 last fall.
Straight from the Coach's Mouth:
"Hopefully today helps us build some momentum," said head coach Ryan Joy. "It was even better to come from behind. We showed some grit and a sense of urgency today and that demonstrates a lot of character to be able to get our first conference win like that."
* PSU visits league-leading Eastern Connecticut on Saturday (Sept. 29) for a 1:00 p.m. game.
* RIC travels to Keene State for a Little East match on Saturday (Sept. 29) at 3:00 p.m.
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