LOUDONVILLE, N.Y. – Siena Women’s Soccer held a decided 20-6 advantage in shots, but Rider’s Bethany-May Howard made nine saves and Ellie Smith scored the lone goal as the Broncs fended off the Saints 1-0 in a matchup of the past two MAAC Champions and 2016 contenders at Siena Field. Freshman goalkeeper Taylor Dorado made three saves for Siena which saw its six-match unbeaten streak and five-match winning streak snapped.
Junior midfielder Madison Vasquez recorded four shots and three others added three targets apiece for the Saints (6-4-3, 4-1) which suffered their first loss against a MAAC foe since also falling to Rider (8-3-2, 5-1) almost a year ago to the day, last Oct. 10 in New Jersey. Siena had entered play unbeaten in its past 11 matches against conference foes, including eight straight during the regular season, in matching the best MAAC start in program history.
The Saints, which had scored 16 goals during their five-match winning streak, created numerous offensive opportunities once again but couldn’t solve Howard. The Broncs’ keeper, who has already been named the MAAC Defensive Player of the Week a league-high four times this season, made five saves in the first half and added four more in the final stanza as Rider ran its unbeaten streak over Siena to seven (5-0-2).
Meanwhile the Broncs were able to cash in on a rare offensive opportunity in the 30th minute. Smith and Caroline Healy initiated a give-and-go down the middle of the field, with Smith finishing her seventh of the season for Rider which remained undefeated on the road this fall (4-0-1).
The Saints return to action Wednesday when they head down the Jersey Shore to battle defending MAAC Regular Season Champion Monmouth at 7 p.m. on ESPN3 in a rematch of last year’s tournament semifinal bout.