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Wesleyan Grounded by Tufts, 2-0 in NESCAC Quarterfinals

Photo Courtesy of Steve McLaughlin.
Photo Courtesy of Steve McLaughlin.

MEDFORD, Mass. – In a hard fought battle between fifth-seeded Wesleyan (8-5-3) and fourth-ranked Tufts on Sunday afternoon, the Cardinals fell 2-0 to the Jumbos (10-4-2). With the win, Tufts will head to first-seeded Williams on Saturday to take on the Ephs, while Wesleyan will wait to hear about an at-large bid for the NCAA tournament. 

The quarterfinal matchup marked Wesleyan's first appearance in the tournament field since 2013, earning the No. 5 seed for the first time since 2011.

HOW IT HAPPENED:

  • Tufts looked to open the scoring during the 16th minute of play when Sophie Lloyd battled Cardinal defender Melissa Wilhelm on a breakaway down the middle of the field. Wilhelm was able to shield the ball, as Wesleyan goalkeeper Sarah Hammond charged out to deny the opportunity.
  • The Cardinals had a great chance to score at the 21:51 mark when Liz Young sent a cross into the box from the right side. Lauren Goetzman settled the cross, before turning on a defender and rifling a shot towards the Jumbo goal. The shot sent Tufts' goalkeeper Emily Bowers diving to her right, but the ball went just wide left, keeping the game scoreless.
  • Just 3:46 later, Jumbo Liz Reed took advantage of a Wesleyan defensive breakdown, before finding the bottom left corner of the goal for the 1-0 edge.
  • Out of the intermission, Tufts extended its lead to 2-0 at the 54:52 mark. Lloyd sent a cross into the box from the left corner, before Reed connected with the ball, sneaking it past Hammond on the far post for her second goal of the game.
  • Wesleyan looked to cut the deficit to one just 1:50 later, but Andi Wiley's one-timer on a cross from Gianna Argento, went just wide left.
  • The Jumbos looked to tack on a third tally during the 73rd minute after a corner kick by Reed, but Hammond leapt through the air to punch the ball out of the box, denying the Tufts' opportunity.
  • The Cardinals had their final chance to get on the board during the 78th minute when Zoe Oasis chipped the ball over the top to Shay Crotty. Brewer and Wesleyan's Crotty went up in the air for the 50/50 ball, but Brewer was able to wrangle it with her hands to deny Crotty's header attempt and preserve the shutout.

INSIDE THE NUMBERS:

  • Hammond made five saves in goal for the Cardinals, while Brewer was forced to make no saves, picking up the win for Tufts.