Bears Fall to Northeastern, 1-0, in Season Opener
HANOVER, NH – Veronica Napoli scored what would prove to be the game-winning goal in the 28th minute of play as Northeastern (3-1-0) claimed a 1-0 victory over the Brown women's soccer team (0-1-0) on Friday afternoon in the first game of the Dartmouth Nike Classic. The Bears had the shot advantage, taking 14 shots to the Huskies' 8, but Northeastern's Michelle Sopko stopped all six shots she faced to keep Brown off the board and earn the victory.
Brown had the better of the play in the early going, as sophomore Eliza Marshall (North Andover, MA) single-handedly outshot Northeastern, 3-1, during the first 26:28 of the game.
However, just over a minute after Sopko made a save on Marshall's third shot of the afternoon, Napoli would find the back of the net on a blast from the top of the box that beat freshman Amber Bledsoe (Withamsville, OH), who finished with one save in the first 45 minutes of action.
Brown continued to press in the second half, outshooting the Huskies, 8-6, in the final 45 minutes and earning five corner kicks to Northeastern's two during the game, but could not get past Sopko.
Marshall and senior Gina Walker (Canyon Country, CA) paced the Bears with three shots each, while freshman Kiersten Berg (Salt Lake City, UT) added two. Freshman MC Barrett (Ithaca, NY) stopped all three shots she faced during the second half of play.
In addition to Barrett, Berg, and Bledsoe, four other members of the Class of 2014 made their collegiate debut this afternoon, as Maddie Wiener (Portland, OR) earned her first career start and Alison Mullin (Lafayette, CO), Louisa Pitney (Washington, DC), and Mika Siegelman (Piedmont, CA) saw valuable time off the bench.
The Bears will look to rebound on Sunday afternoon when they face Colgate in a 12:00 noon game on the final day of competition at the Dartmouth Nike Classic.
Pictured: Eliza Marshall '13. Photo by DSPics.net.