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The Mass Media

The Mass Media

Women’s soccer keeps steady in Little East Conference Play

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Olivia Reid
A women’s soccer player guides the ball to the net during a previous home game. Photo by Olivia Reid / Photography Editor.

With steady play across the past few weeks against other teams in the Little East Conference, the women’s soccer team here at UMass Boston hopes to learn and build upon their past close games. According to Beacons Athletics, since their matchup against Roger Williams University Monday, Sept. 25, the Beacons embarked on a six-game unbeaten streak, showing how tough and gritty this team truly is. Over the past two weeks, they have been able to consolidate two wins and four ties against six competitive opponents. As their season is ending within the next month, every game they play is helping prepare for the LEC tournament in November.

Led by Coach Amy Zombeck, women’s soccer was able to have a relatively dominant season in their four games played in the LEC; they have two wins and two ties. Having not given up a loss yet in the conference play, they are proving to be a strong team that does not back down when challenged. For the 2023–2024 season, they have brought on eight freshmen who all play various positions, as noted by Beacons Athletics. [2] With these new additions, they have been able to have a stable season thus far. Competing against UMass Dartmouth, Rhode Island College, Eastern Nazarene College, Suffolk University, Keene State College and the University of Southern Maine, this team has shown how gritty they are when it comes to tough matchups. 

The two wins against the teams listed above came from Rhode Island College and Eastern Nazarene College. The first few minutes against Rhode Island College were quite eventful on both sides. The Anchormen came out strong in the first six minutes to jump out to an early lead, but the Beacons fought back and were able to score just three minutes later. After an eventful opening, both offenses reached a stalemate and couldn’t get things going over a full hour of playing time. Finally, in minute 70, UMass Boston’s Caleigh Sullivan scored and put the game on thin ice for the Anchormen. This second goal would be all that the Beacons needed to pull through with a win against this competitive opponent, beating the Anchormen 2–1, as noted by Beacons Athletics. [3]

Against Eastern Nazarene College Monday, Oct. 2, the Beacons proved to be an unstoppable team. They opened the floodgates early, with the first of the night coming from Sullivan. An assist from Georgia Bonney off a perfect corner kick helped Sullivan to missile one past the goalkeeper for the first goal of the night. Christina LaFauci added to the scorecard not long after, receiving a pass from Sarah Kelley, taking it to the house for the second goal on the night. Soon after, in minute 21, Bonney and Sullivan connected on a corner kick, giving Sullivan her second goal of the night.

With her team now padding onto their lead, Zombeck began to take out some of her starters and offer an opportunity for some playing time to some of the competitive players on the bench. Sofia Roberts headlined that group, taking the opportunity in stride and scoring, pushing their lead to 4–0. Haynes got on the board later in the game, reclaiming her team lead in goals, and it was a 6–0 barnburner for the Beacons late. With many first-year players being able to get on the field for the first time in this game, three of them were able to net their first goals of their careers. Alexis Williamson and Julia Walsh, both first years, didn’t stop the bleeding against Eastern Nazarene, and Beacons Athletics reported that the Beacons walked out winning by a jaw-dropping eight goals. 

Moving forward in their schedule, it seems that the Beacons put all their eggs in one basket when they shelled the Lions, as they went on a three-game scoreless streak after putting up an eight spot against Eastern Nazarene. Luckily, their defense had shut down their following opponents, with 0–0 ties against Suffolk, Keene State and Southern Maine. However, in that stretch, their conference record added two games to the tie column, which puts a damper on their previous 2–0–1 record in LEC play. As the season begins to enter the end stage, it’s of monumental importance that the Beacons begin to turn the tables on their recent play and get back to making mayhem on the field with their once-electric offense.

UMass Boston plays Westfield State University at home this Wednesday, Oct. 18, in a non-conference matchup against the Owls, as pointed out by Beacons Athletics [1]; they’ll return to conference play this coming Saturday against Castleton University in their second consecutive game on Columbia Point. It’s now or never for the Beacons to regain some momentum in the LEC before the tournament begins, and if they can replicate their performance against the Lions, then they should end up just fine in doing so.

 

[1] UMass Boston. (2023). 2023 Women’s Soccer Schedule. Beacon Athletics. https://beaconsathletics.com/sports/womens-soccer/schedule

[2] UMass Boston. (2023). 2023 Women’s Soccer Roster. Beacon Athletics. https://beaconsathletics.com/sports/womens-soccer/roster

[3] Clifford, M. (2023, September 30). Anchors Up! – Women’s Soccer Ships Up to Boston with a Victory. Beacon Athletics. https://beaconsathletics.com/news/2023/9/30/anchors-up-womens-soccer-ships-up-to-boston-with-a-victory.aspx

[4] Clifford, M. (2023, October 2). Beacons Tame Lions in 8-0 Win. Beacon Athletics. https://beaconsathletics.com/news/2023/10/2/womens-soccer-beacons-tame-lions-in-8-0-win.aspx

About the Contributor
Olivia Reid, Photo Editor