Belles Fall to Scots in Hard-Fought Finale
- Lindsay Rzepecki scored her team-leading third goal of the season.
- Rachel Moore and Jenn Jarmy each earned an assist on the goal.
- Liza Felix made nine saves.
SOUTH BEND, Ind. - The Saint Mary's soccer team concluded their season on the short side of a 3-1 contest against Alma on Monday afternoon.
The Belles controlled possession and tempo of play for the majority of the first half of play. After early pressure while putting together a pair of scoring chances through the opening 10 minutes of play. It was not much longer before Saint Mary's was able to break through for the first goal of the game.
Lindsay Rzepecki gave the Belles the 1-0 lead in the 14th minute of play. Rachel Moore sent a long pass into wide open space along the right side of the Belles' offensive end to Jenn Jarmy. After a pair of touches, Jarmy crossed the ball into the box, where Rzepecki connected with a sliding shot inside the six-yard box for her third goal of the season.
Rzepecki nearly made it a 2-0 game just six minutes later. The senior had yards of open space between her and the nearest defender as it appeared that a breakaway opportunity was beginning to develop. Rzepecki carried the ball down toward the right side of the 18-yard box, cut back to the middle, and sent a shot on goal only to have the Alma goalkeeper turn her effort aside.
In the 30th minute, Rzepecki had yet another shot saved, and the loose ball on the rebound was pounced upon by Jenn Jarmy. Jarmy's shot, however, carried high and over the crossbar as the game remained 1-0.
Kathryn Lueking and Emily Rompola each had strong shots from long range after free kick restarts. On an indirect free kick, Rompola touched the ball live, and Lueking fired a shot from 35 yards with the wind at her back. The senior's strike stayed high as it headed toward the crossbar, but the Alma goalkeeper was able to snatch the shot above her head for the save. Just over a minute later, Rompola was on the sending side of a shot off a free kick from 40 yards out, but the junior's effort was saved waist-high with less than 10 minutes remaining in the half.
The Scots put a pair of shots on goal in the final three minutes of the period, but Liza Felix came up with saves both times as the Belles held on to the 1-0 lead at the break.
As the second half progressed, the possession and momentum began to shift more in favor of the Scots than the Belles. The defense stayed strong along the back line for Saint Mary's while making things difficult for Alma in their attempt to develop strong scoring chances. As the clock moved below 20 minutes, however, the Scots were able to register three goals in succession as Alma struck in the 72nd, 78th, and 82nd minutes of play.
The Belles fought to try to get back in contention in the final eight minutes of play. A corner kick by Rachel Moore into the box was whistled dead due to a handball by the Belles. Still in the 84th minute, Kate Vasile sent a promising cross into the box from the right end line only to have her pass picked off by the goalkeeper just in front of a pair of teammates as Saint Mary's was unable to light up the scoreboard late.
Rzepecki led the Belles with five shots and a goal. Kathryn Lueking added four shots, and Jarmy registered two shots. Liza Felix made nine saves for the Belles.
The Belles end their season with a 2-15-1 overall record and a 2-13-1 mark in MIAA contests.