Playoff hopes still alive after big win

BY RACHEL WHERRY, ASST. SPORTS EDITOR

The Crusaders’ defense was a force to be reckoned with, as the Susquehanna women’s soccer team played Moravian to a 0-0 draw in a conference game on Oct. 18.
The shutout is Susquehanna’s third of the season, advancing the team’s overall record to 4-9-2 and 0-3-1 in the Landmark Conference.
Moravian displayed a strong offensive line-up on the field, outshooting the Crusaders by a 23-11 margin but failing to capitalize on the advantage. The Greyhounds were held to just six shots on goal against Susquehanna’s defense, which was led by sophomore goalie Jordyn Slocum, who ensured her team the shutout with six saves.
Susquehanna trailed Moravian 10-0 in shot attempts nearing the end of the first half and did not take their first shot of the game until the 37th minute.
At the 36:46 mark, freshman midfielder Haley Bingaman scrambled past the Greyhounds’ defense and fired a shot that was saved by Moravian’s goalie. Less than a minute later, freshman midfielder Mairead Ruane fired two more shots that soared high of the goal and wide right, respectively, to close the first half for Susquehanna.
Bingaman was proud of her team’s effort and ability to keep a high level of intensity throughout the match after struggling with intensity in previous games.
“Our focus going into the game was definitely to not give up any goals and to shut them down early and often,” she said. “Our team chemistry was at a very high level, and we fought hard from start to finish. It was a great atmosphere out there on the field.”
Four out of five of Susquehanna’s shots on goal throughout the game were taken in the second half, as the team fought to be the first on the scoreboard. Freshman forward Alyssa Bolger fired the first shot against Moravian’s goalkeeper just three minutes after the halftime break, followed by two more close shots on goal as time ticked away.
After 14 total shots taken in the second half, the game remained tied and went into overtime. In the first 10-minute period, Susquehanna took the shot, but it was unsuccessful, and the teams headed into a second overtime period.
The Greyhounds and Crusaders battled through the second 10 minutes of overtime, hoping to snatch a last-minute victory. However, the clock ran down before either team was able to score and the game ended in a 0-0 draw.
In light of the outcome, Bingaman is staying positive and focusing on the remainder of the team’s season. “It was a total team effort and it was one of our best performances, despite not scoring any goals,” she said. “Hopefully we can get these last few wins and extend our season to playoffs.”
The Crusaders kept their playoff hopes alive with a 2-0 road win over Juniata on Oct. 21. Both goals were scored by senior forward Samantha Zuponcic. She found the back of the net twice in the second half to secure Susquehanna’s first conference victory.
The Crusaders continue their push for the playoffs at home against Catholic at 3:30 p.m. on Saturday.