BETHLEHEM, Pa. --- The Moravian College women's soccer team scored a pair of goals in the first 20 minutes of action and made the lead stick up as the Greyhounds defeated regionally-ranked The Catholic University of America, 2-1, in Landmark Conference action Saturday as part of Moravian's Homecoming celebration.
The Hounds, who won their third straight contest, improved to 6-4-1 overall and 2-1 in Landmark Conference action while handing the Cardinals, ranked tenth in the Mid-Atlantic Region in the latest National Soccer Coaches Association of America regional poll, just their second loss of the season.
"I'm very happy for our group, commented Head Coach Jeff Ykoruk. "To see them battle one of the top teams in our conference and region and get the result is just awesome. We had a very emotional and hard fought game Wednesday night that took a lot out of us. In the end, they found a way to get a big win on a day where we didn't have everything going for us."
Moravian scored in the 16th minute while freshman defender Paige Weiss headed in a corner kick by senior forward Valentina Margiottiello for her second goal of the season. It was the second straight match the duo teamed up on a corner kick to give the Hounds an early lead.
Just over four minutes later, sophomore forward Gabby Stelzmiller broke down the right side of the field and when she neared the end line, she crossed a pass to a wide open junior forward Emily Crowley, who drilled the ball into the net for her first goal of the season.
"I was very happy for both Paige and Emily for scoring in the first half," Ykoruk said. "They deserve those goals and Paige has been playing with a fractured big toe which is very hard to do in our sport."
Moravian junior goalie Jessica Lawton made a career-high 14 saves in the contest for the Greyhounds including five in the first half. Lawton added nine more stops after the intermission as the Cardinals pressed to score before getting a ball into the net in the 89th minute.
"Jess did a great job in a goal once again," noted Ykoruk. "She is there when we need her and has worked so hard all year.
"Defender Lauren Bertucci was amazing once again. She is our rock in the back and never lets us down. Overall it was a special homecoming win for the team and one we will remember for a long time," finished Ykoruk.
The Greyhounds will look for their third straight Landmark Conference win on Tuesday, October 18 when the squad heads to Drew University for a 7:30 p.m. match.