TRIBE 19, LONGWOOD 6
The College of William and Mary wasted little time in proving itself worthy of its preseason no. 2 conference ranking, crushing Longwood University Wednesday, 19-6.
Sophomore attacker Ashley Holofcener and junior attacker Mary Zutly each notched 5 goals to lead the College, while sophomore goalkeeper Emily Geary collected 12 saves for her eleventh career win.
“We were able to make in-game adjustments with ease, which is good when facing an unfamiliar opponent and when we need to prepare for our next game Saturday,” Head Coach Christine Halfpenny said.
Not only did Halfpenny have to deal with an unfamiliar opponent, but the rain-soaked field conditions was cause for sloppy play on both sides early on.
The College was able to beat the elements, controlling the first-half tempo by tallying 23 shots and forcing 7 turnovers, while slicing through the Longwood zone waiting for the opportune moment to shoot.
On one such offensive trip, sophomore defender Molly Wannen found Zulty in front of the net at the 14-minute mark. Zulty spun to her right and jumped, firing the shot above Lancers goalie Eliza Coughter’s right shoulder for one of her 4 first-half goals.
“I just happened to be in the right spot,” Zulty said.
With a comfortable 13-3 lead at the half, the running clock allowed the Tribe to ice the game. Several early second-half possessions prevented Longwood from mounting a comeback, though the Lancers’ Dee Warehime was able to dial one in from long range at the 20-minute mark.
The 9 goal advantage was increased to 10 when Holofcener found the mesh with an assist from junior midfielder Katie Rees.
Key second-half stops by preseason all-CAA goalie Geary silenced the Lancers, who only managed 24 shots to the College’s 37.
“Our defense forced low-percentage, low-angle shots, which made my job easier,” Geary said.
The Tribe is now 16-1 all-time against Longwood and has won sixth straight home opener.
The College’s next match will not be as easy as the Tribe travels to Durham, N.C. to face no. 3 Duke University tomorrow at 3 p.m.
“We just want to play our hardest [on Saturday],” Halfpenny said, who worked as an assistant for the Blue Devils before joining the College in 2006.