Women’s soccer: Tribe downs Tigers, keeps playoff hopes alive

With 10 minutes remaining in William and Mary’s Sunday contest against Towson, the Tribe was nursing a 1-0 lead and searching for a goal to ice the game. The search ended when junior midfielder Brittany Lane, who buried an 81st minute ball into the back of the net off a cross from freshman midfielder Cortlyn Bristol. The goal doubled the Tribe’s (11-7, 5-5) advantage and clinched a key late-season victory for the squad.

“It was our senior night and we’d been losing and I just wanted to get it done,” Bristol said. “I was aiming for [junior midfielder Danielle Axenfeld]. Unfortunately she got pushed to the ground, but at least someone got it.”

With the victory over the Tigers, the Tribe rises to fifth place in the CAA with 15 total points. To make the conference tournament, the Tribe will need to beat Old Dominion Saturday and hope for losses from both George Mason and James Madison.

“We’ll just go out and play the best we can, try to win it, and let the chips fall where they may,” Head Coach John Daly said.

Bristol also scored the Tribe’s first goal of the match in the 49th minute, beating two Towson defenders with a spin move to the left of the box before ripping a shot off just inside the right post. The College will need more performances like Bristol’s to make the tournament.

“All I could think about was ‘Get one in, at least one, just to calm it down,’” Bristol said. “It’s really good because we’ve had some rough games, but we still have a chance.”

Bristol entered the match after an injury to freshman midfielder Katrina Smedley in the 35th minute. Smedley, who is tied for second on the team in assists (4) this season, landed awkwardly on her left leg while attempting a tackle and fell to the pitch clutching her left knee.

Smedley, who had suffered a left knee injury prior to attending the College, is doubtful that she will play Saturday.

The Tribe held a 1-0 lead into the 81st minute, despite allowing Towson a couple of dangerous attacks in the second half. A mix-up on the back line left Towson forward Cheyenne Skidmore one-on-one with junior keeper Grace Barnard. Barnard had to make a sprawling save to maintain the clean sheet.

The Tigers also got off a shot in the 61st minute, which banged off the left post and rolled in front of the goalmouth. Barnard was there once again to maintain the shutout.

“It was kind of the same-old, same-old in the sense that we out-played George Mason [Friday night] and gave up silly goals,” Daly said. “We gave up some chances today, but Grace made a great save.”


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