CASTLETON, Vt. – Using a goal in the 66th minute, the visiting University of Southern Maine Huskies defeated the Castleton University women's soccer team 1-0 on Saturday morning at Dave Wolk Stadium.
Castleton falls to 7-11-0 overall and 4-4-0 with the loss but secures the No. 6 spot in the upcoming LEC Championship. Southern Maine improves to 13-4-1 and 5-3-0, while earning the fourth seed in the conference tournament.
Characterized by significant back-and-forth defensive play, the match was a classic conference battle. Both sides took their shots, but unsuccessful early until Southern Maine's Ciera Berthiaume lined the ball past the Spartan keeper in the 66th minute of action.
Dribbling the ball through several Spartan backs, Berthiaume found the gap in the defense that she needed and sent the ball across to the lower 90 and into the twine. It was her 10th score of the season and the only goal for the contest.
Late in the contest, Makenzi Bellando just missed a game-tying opportunity. As the Castleton forward approached with the ball, she took a half step and fired, clanking the post. It would prove to be one of the best opportunities that the Spartans would get as the Huskies defense remained steadfast throughout.
Both keepers put together stellar performances as they stopped shot after shot. Loren Henderson for Castleton was charged with the loss despite making four saves on five attempts. Southern Maine's Taylor Canastra earned the victory with seven saves.
The two sides split the shot count evenly with 13 apiece, while the Spartans garnered one extra corner kick attempt.
Women's soccer will head south to face UMass-Boston at 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday in LEC Quarterfinal action.
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