The UNCP women’s soccer team came out shooting against regional foe Belmont Abbey, but couldn’t find the back of the net enough times as they fell to the Crusaders on the road 2-1 on Sept. 14.
The Braves (2-2-0) attempted 15 shots compared to Belmont Abbey’s seven. However, the Crusaders (4-1-0) were more efficient with their shots as five out of their seven attempts were on goal compared to just four for the Braves.
UNCP came into the game one game above .500 and looked to avoid continuing their relatively slow start to the season.
At around the 43rd minute Belmont Abbey’s Allyson Elliott scored the first goal of the game off of a Morgan Patton assist. Less than a minute later the same duo struck again for the second goal of the game. Patton again assisted Elliott to make the score 2-0 in favor of the Crusaders. The Braves went into halftime without a score on six shot attempts.
The Braves started the half aggressive and in control. They outshot the Crusaders 9-2 and earned three corner kicks. UNCP eventually would cut the deficit in half early in the 86th minute off of the first collegiate goal for freshman Alexis Pittman.
The Braves, having outshot their opponents 53-23 in the previous three games, couldn’t keep up with the Crusaders. UNCP had one last shot in the 90th minute to try and tie the game, but Kristina Stevenson’s shot sailed wide left and the hosts escaped with a victory.
Kate Weisner tallied three shots to lead the Braves. Five of her teammates managed two shots.
UNCP goalkeeper Gina Ryan registered three saves. It was only the fifth career game out of 22 appearances where UNCP goalkeeper Gina Ryan allowed multiple goals.
Kaitlyn Paul picked up three saves for the Crusaders.