BABSON PARK, Mass. – The Babson College women’s soccer team remained unbeaten in New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) play with a big victory on Tuesday, as the Beavers defeated visiting Clark University, 2-1, at Hartwell-Rogers Field. With the win, Babson improved to 8-3-1 overall and 3-0-1 in the conference, while the Cougars dipped to 4-7-0 overall and 1-3-0 in the NEWMAC.
Babson netted the game’s first goal in the 12th minute of play, as sophomore Amy Festa (Medfield, Mass.) gained control in the left corner and dribbled toward the box. She then hit a blast that glanced off a Clark defender and caromed just inside the left post, giving the Beavers a 1-0 advantage at 11:20.
Clark had two outstanding chances to tie the game later in the opening session. The first came when first-year Lucia Pantuosco (Somers, Conn.) broke free on the right side of the box, but her close-range shot attempt was saved by Babson junior keeper Lisa Wojnar (Bellaire, Texas) at the 28-minute mark. The Cougars then threatened again in the 36th minute, but Wojnar was able to tip a rocket by senior Laura Hedden (East Greenbush, N.Y.) off the crossbar before securing it at 35:40.
The Beavers tacked on a huge insurance goal less than four minutes into the second half, beginning when junior Bridget McCurdy (Weston, Mass.) hit a lead pass over the defense and just into the box on the left side. Senior captain Patty Pytlik (Wellesley, Mass.) then ran it down and chipped a shot over charging goalie Joanna Clark (Windham, Maine) and into the net at 48:50.
Wojnar continued her outstanding play with three more saves in the second half, including a diving stop on first-year Emma Lynch’s (Pawtucket, R.I.) breakaway bid down the left side in the 78th minute. That would prove to be pivotal later in the period, as Clark pulled back to within one after senior Megan O’Rourke (Somerset, Mass.) converted a penalty kick to make it 2-1 at 88:11. The Babson defense then held the Cougars without a shot over the final 1:39 as the hosts came away with the 2-1 victory.
Wojnar finished with a total of seven saves in the win for Babson, while Joanna Clark turned away three shots in goal for the Cougars.