POUGHKEEPSIE, N.Y. – Siena Women’s Soccer is headed to the MAAC Semifinals for the 11th time in program history. Freshman striker Meghan Riccardi scored the decisive goal in the 51st minute and the sixth seeded Saints recorded a program record fourth consecutive shutout in defeating rival and No. 3 seed Marist 1-0 in the MAAC Quarterfinals at Tenney Stadium.
With the MAAC Tournament re-seeding following the quarterfinal round, as the lowest remaining seed Siena (10-6-3) advances to face regular season champion and No.1 overall seed Monmouth in the semifinals on Friday in West Long Branch, N.J. Match time is TBA. The Hawks edged the Saints 1-0 in the regular season meeting between the squads Oct. 3 in Loudonville.
As has been the story all fall long, a timely goal and a fantastic defensive effort was the key to success for the Saints as they posted their second 1-0 shutout over the third ranked team in the MAAC in 11 days.
Riccardi provided the goal in the early stages of the second half, following a poorly struck goal kick by Marist keeper Makala Foley. Senior captain Allison Clark quickly played the ball from the right to the middle to Riccardi who was sandwiched between a pair of defenders. The ball deflected around, but Riccardi eventually emerged from the scrum and broke untouched down the center of the box, firing home her fourth goal of the year into the top left corner.
It would be all the offense the red-hot Saints would need as they ran their unbeaten streak to five and improved to 5-2 in MAAC Tournament contests since 2010.
Marist (7-11-2) held decided edges in both shots (14-5) and corners (6-3), but the vast majority of their chances were blocked shots by well-positioned Siena defenders. The Red Foxes put just one of their shots on target and it was stopped by senior goalkeeper Liz Rogan who recorded the clean sheet. The shutout marked the fourth in a row for Rogan and her eighth individual clean sheet of the year in tying her with Laura Ettinger (2008) for the program single-season record.
As a defensive unit the Saints recorded their program single-season record ninth shutout, while also breaking the longest shutout streak in team history of 355:31 set in 2010. Siena hasn’t allowed a goal since Oct. 14 in holding their opponents scoreless now for the last 443:21.
Foley made three saves for Marist which suffered its first loss against a MAAC foe at Tenney Stadium this season (4-1-1).
With the victory Siena has eclipsed double digits in wins for the eighth time under head coach Steve Karbowski, while earning their first win in Poughkeepsie since 2008. The lower seeded team has now won all four postseason meetings between the MAAC rivals.