The sixth-ranked William Smith College soccer team scored a pair of goals in the first half and hung on to beat eighth-ranked Amherst College, 2-1, in an NCAA tournament third-round game at Case Western Reserve University’s DiSanto Field Saturday afternoon. With the win, the Herons advance to the quarterfinal round for the fourth consecutive season.
The Herons (14-1-6) will take on fourth-ranked Case Western Reserve tomorrow, Nov. 20, at 1 p.m. The Spartans defeated 15th-ranked Loras 3-1 earlier in the day.
Ava Ruppersberger finished the game with three points on a goal and an assist. Kirsten Nelson started in goal and made six saves. Mika Fisher played all 90 minutes in the Amherst goal and made four saves.
- The Mammoths (18-3-0) concluded the game with a 15-13 edge in shots.
- Both teams had four corner kicks.
- William Smith carried the play early in the first half. In the fourth minute, senior Julia DiMenna had a shot attempt stopped by Fisher.
- In the 16th minute, Ruth Hotaling fired a free-kick attempt off of the crossbar.
- Ruppersberger broke through in the 33rd minute. She intercepted a clearing attempt and slipped a shot into the lower right corner of the cage. It was her eighth goal of the season.
- Two minutes later, Maggie Speckhart curled a shot into the upper left corner of the cage. Her seventh goal of the season was assisted by Ruppersberger and Katrine Berg.
- Amherst cut into the lead in the 36th minute, Patience Kum ripped a shot inside the right goal post. Her ninth goal of the season was assisted by Isabelle Geneve.
- Neither team found the back of the net in the second half. The Mammoths carried the play, outshooting William Smith 7-3 in the final 45 minutes as they searched for the equalizer.
- Kum appeared to tie the game early in the second half, but the goal was waved off because she was in an offside position.
- In the 78th minute, Nelson made a pair of diving stops for William Smith, robbing Isabel Stern and Kum of golden scoring opportunities.
- Late in the frame, Amherst had a chance taken off of the board by a brilliant defensive play by Ireland Krawczyk.
Sunday’s quarterfinal contest will be the first meeting between William Smith and Case Western Reserve.