Women's Soccer Falls In NCAA Regional Final

November 11, 2012

Misericordia’s Sam Helmsetter’s marker in the 21st minute stood up as the game-winning goal as she helped lift the #10 Cougars to a 1-0 triumph over #15 Middlebury in the second round of the NCAA Tournament on Dragone Field.

Misericordia, who runs its streak to 11 consecutive matches, makes their first-ever NCAA Sectionals appearance. The Panthers end their fine season at 13-3-1 with the setback in their seventh NCAA Tournament appearance.

After Middlebury failed to capitalize on a couple of early chances to get on the scoreboard, the Cougars scored on a breakaway.

Laura Roney set the table with a pass from the middle of the box to Helmsetter, who slipped past two defenders and buried a shot to the bottom left corner for her team-leading 18th tally of the campaign.

The Panthers had two good looks by Scarlett Kirk in the final 15 minutes of the opening stanza, but could not tie the game.

In the 32nd minute, Kirk shrugged off a pair of backs to rip a shot from 10 yards away, but she was denied by Misericordia keeper Maureen Ciccosanti as the netminder made a sliding stop to deflect the ball out of harm’s way.

As the period wound down, Kirk’s other bid came on a header on the right side of the box, but it was kicked away by Angelina Buzgo for the key team-save.

In the 62nd minute Kirk had another open look, but her bicycle kick had too much strength and it sailed over the net.

Misericordia had a golden opportunity on a corner kick five minutes later, but Middlebury keeper Elizabeth Foody made a great play to snatch the ricochet off of one of her defenders.

Middlebury’s final chance came with 11 minutes to go in regulation when Kirk received a cross from the middle of the box from Julia Favorito, but the ball trickled just to the left of the net.

Ciccosanti, who came into the national tournament as one of six first-year players in the nation to crack the top 20 in goals against average (0.39), blanked her 10th opponent of the season. She ended the contest stopping all nine of the shots she saw on net.

Foody collected two stops in the setback for the Panthers.

Middlebury had a frustrating afternoon as they finished with a commanding 23-5 edge in shots (10-3 on goal), while Misericordia held the 3-1 lead in corner kicks.