NIAGARA UNIV., N.Y. - Niagara women's soccer came out with a 2-0 victory over the visiting Saint Francis (Pa.) Red Flash at Niagara Field on Friday evening in day one of the 2012 Niagara Fall Classic.
“This was a very good win for us," head coach Peter Veltri said. "I’m very proud of the way we played tonight. All week we discussed the importance of winning this game. Last year they took it to us at their place so we wanted some revenge. At the same time it gives us a good gauge of what we need to work on before conference play."
The Purple Eagles (3-3-0) and Red Flash (2-4-1) came out firing in the opening half, with Niagara outshooting SFU by a slim 9-8 margin. It was the Purple Eagles who struck first in the 43rd minute of play. Rookie Maria Siegrist-Gabas fed a through ball to fellow freshman Hayley Besaw, who lofted the ball over Red Flash goalkeeper Brianna Butcher for the 1-0 lead headed into half.
Both teams continued to apply pressure in the second 45 minutes of play, as Niagara peppered Butcher with six shots, while Feiertag had to make eight stops.
Sophomore Catherine Meyer tallied her first goal of the season in the 79th minute to give the Purple Eagles a two-goal cushion. Meyer ripped a high shot into the upper left corner off a feed from senior forward Jamie Raepple.
“I thought we played well defensively," added Veltri. "They have some dangerous players up top, but we did a good job keeping them off the scoresheet."
Goalkeeper Claire Feiertag was solid in goal for Niagara, making six saves for her second shutout of the season to drop her overall goals-against average to a 0.80.
Meyer led the team in shots with four while freshman midfielder Kori Thorne added three to the total.
The Purple Eagles wrap up the invitational on Sunday, battling Robert Morris at 2 p.m. The Colonials dropped a 1-0 decision to Buffalo in the opening game of the NU Classic.