Saints Rally Late to Earn Tie in Wild Opener
Published: August 21, 2015
Sophomore back Kaela Mahoney scored the game-tying goal with just 75 seconds remaining in regulation as Siena Women’s Soccer rallied late to earn a 3-3 tie at Holy Cross in a wild season opener in Worcester, Mass. Classmate Madison Vasquez led the way offensively for the Saints in tallying her first collegiate multi-goal game en route to posting a career-high five points.
Siena twice took one-goal leads, only to see Holy Cross erase the deficit each time and eventually take their first advantage on an Aly Spencer score in the 67th minute. With the outcome hanging in the balance in the waning moments, the Saints responded to capture a hard-earned and much deserved point to open their 2015 campaign.
Junior back Tara Sobierajski, who was brilliant on set pieces throughout, crossed in a high arcing corner from the right side. Making a bid at a hat trick, Vasquez headed the ball off the crossbar, but corralled the rebound and found Mahoney who notched the thrilling 89th minute equalizer to send the Saints to their sixth overtime in their last eight matches dating back to last season.
Both sides attempted four shots apiece in overtime, although the Crusaders had the better chances. But senior goalkeeper Liz Rogan, who was appearing in just her fourth collegiate match and only second start, made three impressive game-saving stops in the extra sessions to preserve the tie. Rogan finished with a career-high eight saves overall for the Saints which are now unbeaten in 13 of their last 16 matches (6-3-7) dating back to last season.
Competing in the earliest season opener in the program’s 36 seasons, the Saints wasted no time in getting off to a strong start. Siena had numerous chances in the opening moments which ultimately led to the first score in the 22nd minute. Sobierajski crossed in a corner from the right side that was batted around in front, but eventually found Vasquez who finished just inside the far left post. It marked the second year in a row in which Vasquez scored the Saints’ first goal of the season.
Vasquez netted her second goal just 16 seconds into the second half to put the Saints back in front 2-1. Siena’s sophomores held a heavy hand in all of the scoring as Michele Tremblay forced a turnover deep in the Crusaders’ third of the field and one-touched a pass to Vasquez who blasted a low line drive from just outside the top of the box inside the far left post.
Sarah Price twice tied the game for Holy Cross with a pair of goals in a six-minute span. She pulled the Crusaders even at 1-1 just 28 seconds before the end of the first half and then netted the equalizer to make it a 2-2 score in the 51st minute. Spencer added an assist to finish with three points in joining Price in posting a multiple point effort for Holy Cross.
Each side attempted 19 shots, with Holy Cross harboring a slim 5-4 edge in corners in an evenly played match. With the tie the Saints ran their unbeaten streak to four (3-0-1) in Worcester, having scored a total of 11 goals in those matches against the Crusaders.
Siena continues its season opening three-game road trip Sunday with a 2 p.m. kickoff at defending America East Regular Season Champion Hartford.