Nov. 14, 2010

Courtesy of Johns Hopkins

BALTIMORE, MD - Junior Erica Suter and senior Allie Zazzali notched second-half goals to help the Johns Hopkins women's soccer team to a 2-0 win over Hamilton in the NCAA Second Round on Sunday evening at Homewood Field. The Blue Jays improve to 18-3-1 on the year and advance to the NCAA Sweet 16 for the third straight year, while the Continentals see their season come to a close at 10-4-3.

The two sides played to a scoreless draw in the first half, with Hopkins holding a 12-4 edge in shots in the opening stanza. In the 29th minute senior Jessica Hnatiuk sent a long throw-in into the box and junior Leslie O'Brien blasted a hard, low shot towards goal that was pushed wide by Hamilton freshman goalkeeper Liza Gergenti. Suter was in the right position to collect the rebound and found herself one-on-one with Gergenti about six yards from goal on the left side. Suter sent a shot to the near post but Gergenti cut off the angle and punched the ball away from goal.

Just before halftime JHU again looked to be on the brink of scoring, but couldn't capitalize. With just over two minutes to play in the half, freshman Kelly Baker slipped a pass past a Hamilton defender to classmate Pamela Vranis, who ripped a shot from about 10 yards out that was swallowed up by Gergenti. About a minute later Baker found freshman Christina Convey in a dangerous position in front of goal, but Convey was unable to connect a clean shot on goal and the two teams went into the intermission tied at 0-0.

Hopkins finally broke through the Hamilton defense in the 50th minute. Junior Paulina Goodman received the ball with her back to the goal about 12 yards out inside the 18-yard box. Goodman played the ball back to Suter at the top of the box and Suter settled it and sent a lofted shot to the upper far post to give Hopkins a 1-0 advantage.

In the 58th minute the Continentals had perhaps their best scoring opportunity. Sophomore Alex Rimmer played a long ball from midfield over the top of the Hopkins' defense to senior Lauren Farver. Farver found herself alone with JHU sophomore goalkeeper Meredith Maguire and sent a low shot towards the far post that Maguire made a diving save to her left to stop.

The Blue Jays extended their lead to 2-0 in the 69th minute when senior Erin Stafford played a corner kick to the far post where Zazzali was waiting and headed home her 11th goal of the season to give JHU the two-goal cushion with just over 20 minutes to play.

Hopkins held the advantage in shots (27-5) and corner kicks (9-1). Maguire played the entire game at goalkeeper for Hopkins and recorded five saves, while Gergenti made 14 saves between the pipes for the Continentals.