LEWISTON, NY – The Iona College women's soccer team fell on Saturday afternoon, 1-0, at Niagara. The loss was Iona's first in Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference play this season.
Both sides had solid chances in the opening minutes of the match, but each side kept the ball out of the net. Niagara's Annie Ibey shot across the turf was saved by Havrilla in the fifth minute and then senior Amber Crispin had a free run, danced around the goaltender who came sliding out, but her shot from a tough angle was directed out of bounds by the defender in front.
The Purple Eagles registered three shots across the next nine minutes of action, forcing Havrilla to make two saves. Sandwiched in between Niagara's second and third shots of the sequence was a Ciara Guglielmo shot that sailed too high.
Niagara kept Iona from registering a shot over a 20-minute span in the first half. During a 10-minute swing in that stretch, the Purple Eagles ripped off six shots; Havrilla was up to the task for the Maroon & Gold, making four stops, ending the first half with six total saves.
Niagara held an 11-4 edge in shots in the first half, but both sides ended the first 45 minutes of play in a scoreless tie.
Niagara had controlled the pace of play for most of the entire first half, but Iona changed momentum a bit as they came out of the locker room. Mackenzie Meixner and Faith Prezioisi directed shots on net in the opening four minutes, but Sabrina Locas made the stops.
A corner kick opportunity for the Purple Eagles in the 53rdminute forced Havrilla to make another save, her seventh of the match up that point. The two sides continued to trade shots over the next 11 minutes, but both keepers held strong. It wasn't until the 69thminute that someone would find the tie-breaking goal, as Selena Mangoni had a free run and put one past Havrilla to give Niagara a 1-0 lead.
The Maroon & Gold got shots on goal from Preziosi and Samantha Hogan, but time would expire on the Gaels' comeback chance.
Iona completes its three-game road swing, as well as conference play, when they visit Delaware State on Wednesday. The match is scheduled to start at 3 PM.
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