Tigerville, S.C. -- The North Greenville women’s soccer team suffered a heartbreaking loss Saturday afternoon at Pepsi Stadium, as the visiting Mount Olive Trojans came away with the 1-0 victory in a well-played game by the Crusaders.
The Crusaders came out with great intensity and took the first shot of the game within the first minute, as a good passing sequence set up sophomore Rylee Marks with a 20-yard attempt that was saved. The pressure continued, as senior forward Lindsay Tuten beat her defender and played in a cross that was narrowly missed by freshman Karly Denaburg. Just a few minutes later, in the 13th minute, Lindsay Tuten had the best opportunity of the first half when she was played in by a beautifully weighted through ball by junior Alex Pagliaro, but her attempted was well saved by the Mount Olive keeper.
One of the other best chances created during the opening half was a near-post strike by senior Megan Robertson that drew another fine stop. NGU dominated throughout the first half and was unfortunate not to take a lead into halftime. The team outshot Mount Olive 10-2 in the first 45 minutes, but both of the shots by Mount Olive would have been goals if not for the work of junior keeper Maddie Schober. She was forced into a diving save in the 24th minute before making a reaction save from point-blank range in the 27th minute to keep the scoreline at 0-0.
The second half started with another close chance by the Crusaders when Denaburg sent a left-footed free kick attempt crashing off of the crossbar in the 47th minute. Pagliaro had a header inside the six-yard box saved in the 55th minute, and Robertson had another strike from distance nearly miss. Junior midfielder Lauren Prevett had a strong attempt blocked in the 69th minute, and put another chance just over the bar in the 80th minute.
Unfortunately, between those two strikes Mount Olive took the 1-0 lead against the run of play when Isabella Nunu attempted a left-footed shot from outside the box and saw it curl just inside the far post in the 75th minute. The final 15 minutes saw NGU double their efforts to score the equalizer, and their closest opportunity came when Tuten struck the crossbar in the final minute.
The possession battle throughout the game was split virtually 50-50, yet North Greenville created far more chances and took more than triple the amount of shots as Mount Olive. Schober ended the match with three saves for NGU, while the Mount Olive keeper made an impressive 10 saves to preserve the shutout.
North Greenville falls to 2-10-1 for the season, and have a full week to recover before their next match at Southern Wesleyan University. The game will be on October 22nd and will kick off at 1:00 PM.