William and Mary opened conference play Thursday with a tough 2-1 loss to Colonial Athletic Association foe Charleston. The Cougars scored on a free kick in the final minute of regulation to break the tie and claim the victory as Charleston (6-4-0, 1-0 CAA) downed the Tribe (3-6-0, 0-1 CAA).
As has been the case recently for the College, the Tribe was shelled with shots in the first half, weathering 11 and only responding with three of its own. Junior goalkeeper Katelyn Briguglio bailed out the College with four saves to keep the score even going into the half.
In the second half, Charleston finally broke through as forward Talia Colchicho got one past Briguglio six minutes after the break. But the Tribe didn’t let that stand for long; sophomore midfielder Colleen Norton got the ball to freshman midfielder Renee Kohler, who knocked the ball against the crossbar and in to tie the game at 1-1.
With the minutes ticking down, it looked like the tie would stand and send the Tribe into its first overtime decision of the season. But with just 24 seconds left in the match, the Cougars drew a yellow card and a free kick that midfielder Laura Ortega put into the net from twenty yards, effectively ending the match and securing their victory over the Tribe, 2-1.
With the 2-1 decision, the College is now riding a three-game losing streak, dating back to before its 10-day break due to Hurricane Florence. It looks to snap that pattern when it continues to battle within the conference Sunday in an away game against Towson.