The X-Women soccer team wrapped up pre-season exhibition play on Saturday afternoon at the Chedabucto Lifestyle Complex in Guysborough, N.S., playing to a 3-1 loss to the defending AUS champion Cape Breton Capers.
The X-Women started aggressively and for the first 15 minutes of the game as their experienced midfield anchored by Larissa White (Westphal, NS) and Olivia Cziph (Thunder Bay, ON) controlled proceedings. Gradually the Capers came back into the game as the assured Ciera Disipio (Ottawa, ON) imposed herself on the match. In the mix among the AUS veterans was Caper rookie and Antigonish native, Rebecca Lambke, who made her presence felt and did not look out of place among some of the league's best midfielders.
StFX's best chance of the half came in the 23rd minute as Larissa White made some nice moves and threaded a ball to Mercy Miles (Accra, Ghana) who elected not to shoot and passed to forward Kelsey Ellis (Ottawa, ON) whose shot from close in found the Caper 'keeper, Rachel Yerxa (Mississauga, ON). Five minutes later Lambke fired a great shot that just went over the bar. Moments later CBU were awarded a corner kick. Capers' central defender, Madison Lavers (Halifax, NS), showed great composure amongst a sea of players and gave CBU a one goal lead going into half-time.
The second half began with the Capers pressing in X's half and earning another corner. In the 50th minute Madison Goodliffe (Mississauga, ON) curled in a peach and StFX failed to clean their lines. Second year midfielder, Amelia Carlini (Ottawa, ON) calmly put the ball into the net. The X-Women quickly went on the attack and were awarded with a goal by central defender Amy Rowe (Aurora, ON) in the 54th minute.
There were numerous substitutions by both teams throughout the half, but it did not disrupt the quality of play. Nine minutes from time it was CBU rookie starter, Erin Freeman (Halifax, NS), placed a perfectly weighted ball into the far corner of the StFX net and gave the Capers a two-goal lead they would see through to the final whistle.
The game marked the third pre-season game played by the X-Women over the past week and a half. They previously played the Memorial Sea-Hawks in Halifax on August 27th and found themselves on the losing end of a 2-1 game. Catherine Kennedy (Antigonish, NS) was the lone goal scorer for the X-Women.
On August 22nd, early into pre-season training camp, the X-Women defeated the Université de Moncton Aigles Bleues 1-0 as freshman forward Amanda Smith (Ottawa, ON) notched the goal for StFX.
The X-Women open AUS regular season play at home Saturday, September 8th when they host the Aigles Bleues at 1:00 pm at StFX Oland Stadium. The UNB Reds will be in town on Sunday to face StFX, also at 1:00 pm.
Courtesy Bart Sears, StFX Sports Information