Antigonish, NS – The StFX X-Women picked up their second win of the weekend with a 1-0 victory over the UNB Reds Sunday afternoon.
Amanda Smith's (Ottawa, ON) goal late in the opening half held up as the only one the X-Women needed in the win, despite both squads delivering solid scoring chances throughout the game.
First year Reds striker Allie Hughes-Goyette (Garibaldi Highland, BC) nearly put the visitors on the board in the opening minutes of the match as she beat an X defender down the side and got a decent shot on net, forcing X-Women keeper Alyssa Spridgeon (Whitby, ON) to be sharp and make the save.
The Reds forwards were creating chances early on as Abby Sullivan (Minneapolis, MN) also had a nice shot on goal in the 12th minute.
StFX's first quality chance came in the 18th minute from All-Canadian Mercy Myles (Accra, Ghana) as she directed solid shot on net from outside the 18 yard box but Reds keeper Brynn Nash (Saskatoon, SK) was up for the task.
Myles almost connected with striker Melanie Belong (Moncton, NB) as she stole the ball midfield and fed through to Belong as they both outsprinted the UNB defenders to approach the net, but Belong's shot went wide.
Sullivan was dangerous for the Reds again minutes later, as her shot in tight to the side of the StFX net deflected off an X-Women defender and then the side of the net.
Late in the half Myles had some fancy footwork for the X-Women, controlling possession through midfield and into the Reds zone as she fed a nice ball to Smith who turned and fired on the Reds goal, hitting the post.
StFX freshman forward Hannah Engdahl (Cochrane, AB) played a strong opening half for the X-Women in her AUS debut, creating spaces and putting a solid shot on net in the 37th minute.
Myles nearly gave the X-Women the lead at the end of the half with a strong shot that just grazed the top of the Reds net. Less than a minute later in extra time, Smith made good on a miscued goal kick to drive the ball past Nash and give the X-Women the 1-0 advantage at halftime.
The second half got more physical as both squads battled for touches and possession of the ball.
UNB created some chances early on in the second half - midfielder Eve MacDonald (Richmond, ON) nearly beat Spridgeon with a solid, low shot but the keeper made the save.
In the 63rd minute it appeared that Madison Goertz (Saskatoon, SK) scored off a corner kick but the ball curved around to hit the back of the mesh as UNB still searched for the equalizer.
The Reds kept up the pressure as veteran Clarisse Ramirez (Ottawa, ON) was strong in the midfield, getting balls through for the forwards.
StFX's best chance of the half came in the 76th minute when Engdahl fed a ball through to Smith who had ample room to get a shot off, but the ball went just wide of the far open side of the Reds net.
Minutes later Engdahl nearly connected with Myles but she hit the crossbar from in tight.
The StFX defense picked up their play in the latter part of the second half, limiting the scoring chances of the Reds.
Late in the game in the 88th minute Engdahl's ripped a free kick at the Reds nets, dinging another ball off the cross bar. Myles followed up and deposited into the net but was called offside.
On the ensuring possession the Reds nearly scored the equalizer as Cierra Thomas (London, ON) set up Emily Burton (Hammonds Plains, NS) who ripped the ball off the StFX cross bar. It was the last chance for the Reds however as the X-Women hung on for the 1-0 win.
Veteran defender Larissa White (Westphal, NS) earned Subway player of the game honours for efforts. Hughes-Goyette was the player of the game for UNB.
Both teams are back in action next weekend. The Reds will host Memorial on Saturday, September 14th, while the X-Women travel to Halifax on Sunday to take on Dalhousie.
Courtesy Krista McKenna, StFX Athletics