WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. – Lesley Univeristy women's soccer team ended their 2017 campaign with a 2-0 loss at No. 6 Williams in the opening round of NCAA Regional Tournament. Lesley ended their season with a 16-3-3 overall record, while Williams improves to 17–1–1.
Williams enjoyed long spells of possession in the first half, but Lesley kept the home side off the scoreboard. Lynx defenders blocked several Eph crosses to prevent scoring opportunities.
The Ephs saw a chance in the 25th minute, when forward Natasha Albaneze volleyed a hard shot on goal from 20 yards out. However, Lynx goalkeeper Lilly Donovan, who entered the game with a .968 save percentage and 0.11 goals against average, caught the attempt.
The game was scoreless at halftime, and Williams recorded nine shots to Lesley's none in the period. Donovan had three saves for the Lynx to keep the score even.
Eph forward Alison Lu started the scoring shortly after halftime. In the 47th minute, Lu won the ball on the left side of the Lynx penalty area. She dribbled in toward goal and powered a shot inside the near post to put Williams up 1-0.
Albaneze scored the Ephs' second goal in the 53rd minute. Lu played a pass to midfielder Natalie Turner-Wyatt in space on the left wing. Turner-Wyatt sent a low cross through the box, and Albaneze tapped it in at the back post.
Lesley threatened in the 67th minute when senior midfielder Karlie Rubin (San Diego, Calif.) made a long run into Williams territory and won a corner. Following Rubin's delivery from the set piece, midfielder McKenna Straube sent a shot wide.
The scoreline remained 2-0 in the Ephs' favor at the final whistle. Williams finished with a 15-2 edge in shots. Donovan totaled five saves in the contest.
"To play against Williams in the first round is never easy, they're just a quality side through and through they really don't have any weaknesses," said head coach Paul Vasconcelous. "A big credit to our girls, they were phenomenal. We prepared all week really well, but kudos and congratulations to our girls they worked hard all 90 minutes, they stuck to the game plan, and they did a wonderful job. They should have their heads nice and high they did a wonderful job representing the university and the NECC Conference."