This post was written by Hatchet staff writer Josh Solomon.
In a span of just 11 minutes, the Colonials saw their 0-0 tie turn into a three goal deficit.
GW fell to Saint Francis 3-1 at home in last match of the D.C. Invitational, despite outshooting the Flash 18-10.
Senior Jane Wallis, with the assist from freshman Kate Elson, connected for the Colonials’ lone goal with 50 seconds to play in regulation, but the play of Saint Francis senior and NCAA Division I active leading scorer Tesa McKibben was too much for GW to contain.
McKibben helped tally the first goal of the game for the Flash (1-2-1), as she took a free kick and lofted a ball just over the Colonial defenders and into perfect position for a header from Alecia McNiff.
“She’s [McKibben] a very good player and honestly I thought we did alright. Really good players like that – you can do a really good job marking them for 89 minutes and the one minute you slip or the one minute she cuts by you. That could be enough to punish you,” head coach Sarah Barnes said.
The game slowly unraveled from there, as McKibben’s touches turned into goals. Just nine minutes after the first strike, McKibben broke free ahead of the GW defenders, putting senior goalkeeper Nicole Ulrick in a tough situation. Ulrick came out to the front left corner of the box to try to cut off the strike, but the veteran goalscorer punched it into the back right of the net.
Ulrick recorded four saves on the day, with three goals allowed.
Before GW (1-2) had time to react, two minutes later McKibben skillfully dribbled around the Colonials, leaving one on the ground, and placed the ball in the back right corner for a final deflating goal, leaving GW in an insurmountable hole.
The Colonial defense played a solid game despite the outcome, highlighted by junior Elizabeth Casey’s many successful clears.
Wallis, whose goal came far too late for GW, had a total of four shots on the day. The offense was finally able to break through, she said, because of their adjustment to look for “simple” touch passes, instead of longer, more complicated crosses.
In addition to Wallis’ four shots, senior Alex Neal contributed with four of her own. Meanwhile, sophomore forward Kyla Ridley earned herself playing time over freshman MacKenzie Cowley and sophomore Kristi Abbate, finding herself in the middle of goal scoring opportunities when in the game, including three shots on goal.
“She went in, she took advantage of the situation and that got her more time. I’m excited about that I think you have to take away some of those points from a game like this. Kyla stepped up and we’re looking for that from all of our players,” Barnes said.
GW will go on the road for its next four games, starting with Old Dominion in Norfolk, Va. on Friday.