By D.F. Pendrys
NEW HAVEN, CT – Southern Connecticut State picked up a victory over Franklin Pierce thanks to a penalty kick goal from Kelsey Burr Wednesday night at Jess Dow Field. The only goal of the contest broke open the nil-nil stalemate and the Owls were able to hold off FPU’s attempts to get one back.
In the first fifteen minutes of the game, each side had their chances, and each side forced the other to make a save. Southern had another chance as Kylee Slavik sent a shot on net only for it to be saved by FPU’s Gabby Calidonio at 15:14. The Owls continued the pressure but the Ravens successfully stopped the run and started the ball back down the field.
As the game approached the twenty five minute mark each team came up with some pressure but shots on net were not to be found. SCSU would renew its attack and get some offensive zone chances, and FPU had its own zone access, though they shot it wide. At 29:30 Aries Bell of SCSU sent a shot on net but it was saved. FPU responded at 13:25 when Eleonora Franco launched a shot from far out, but it was also corralled by the keeper.
SCSU found a great chance come their way with less than eight to play when they were able to send a header on the goal but it bounced off the cross bar. Though it led to a corner kick, but in the aftermath FPU cleared it. SCSU tried again soon after, but FPU pushed them out again. The Owls moved the ball well in the 41st minute and set up another strike, but it went left and soon the horn was blaring to end the half.
Viridiana Vazquez Kloss of FPU wasted little time and came up with a shot in the 46th minute, but SCSU’s Burr responded a minute later. SCSU in the early going also sent a cross pass into the side of the net as their pressure continued.
For another twenty minutes the back and forth would proceed. Shots for FPU would come from Haily Goodman and for SCSU from Kaitlyn D’Amico though each squad would spend reasonable time in their opposing end. Finally at 70:39 a handball was called in the FPU end and Burr was given the penalty kill to take. She lined it up and shot it into the left side of the net on the ground for the deciding factor.
Franklin Pierce tried to even the score but Southern’s defense thwarted them in the zone or held them outside the zone at all as the clock ticked down to ten minutes left. Southern attempted to get more when a well set cross from Burr landed at Kylee Slavik’s feet and she shot it at goal but the keeper stopped it. FPU renewed their pressure and with under five minutes to play got their most credible chances as one shot was blocked by a defender and it bounced to Salome Kerguillec who had a good shot, but Allie Smith of Southern made the save. Franco had another shot attempt late but eventually FPU ran out of time and SCSU took the win.
Head Coach Adam Cohen’s SCSU contingent is now 4-5-1 and 3-3-1. Head Coach Matt Johnson and Franklin Pierce is 6-3-2 and 3-3-2. Calidonio made 6 saves for FPU and Smith made 4 for SCSU.
Franco led FPU with 4 shots, Kerguillec and Vazquez Kloss had 2 apiece. Those three and Anna Bayet each of the team’s 4 shots on goal.
For Southern, Slavik had 4, Burr 3, and D’Amico and Bell had 2, while Slavik had 3 shots on goal, Burr had 2 shots on goal, and D’Amico and Bell had 1 apiece.