Oct. 13, 2013
BUFFALO, N.Y. – The Ohio University soccer team (6-4-4, 2-2-2 MAC) earned an important league victory after knocking off Buffalo (4-7-2, 1-5-0 MAC) by the score of 1-0 Sunday afternoon at UB Stadium.
After a scoreless first half, the Bobcats got on the board just a minute into the second half when junior Liz Finley (Mason, Ohio) notched her third goal of the season (and her second game winner) to give the ‘Cats the lead they would not relinquish.
“To get four points on the road this weekend - including a win after a long extra time effort Thursday - it was a great effort for our team,” head coach Aaron Rodgers said. “Buffalo came out and had a good game plan and put us under pressure. But we did well defensively in the back four and overall with all 11 players like we talk about.”
Senior goalkeeper Mattie Liston (Lakewood, Ohio) notched her third shutout of the season and 19th of her career Sunday while making eight saves in a full 90 minutes in the cage. She has now made 356 saves in her career and her 19 shutouts are tied for first in program history.
Junior Holly Harris (Batavia, Ohio) played well for Ohio offensively with a team-high three shots, including two on goal. Freshman Alexis Milesky (Plain City, Ohio) added two shots for the ‘Cats.
After only a couple shot opportunities in the match’s opening minutes, Buffalo had the first strong chance for either team in the 15th minute, but Liston saved the shot attempt from Karen McMahon. Liston made another stellar save in the 17th minute and Ohio began to take control of possession after that.
The Bobcats had an excellent opportunity in the 35th minute, when freshman Carly Manso (Libertyville, Ill.) broke free and rifled a shot at the Buffalo goal that hit the post. Then, in the 43rd minute, junior Annie Beard fired another shot on goal that was saved by Buffalo goaltender Ainsley Wheldon.
The Bobcats and Bulls entered the break in a scoreless tie. The teams were even in corners in the first half (1-1), while Buffalo held a 7-5 edge in shots for the period.
Ohio came out in the second half aggressively and it paid off, as the ‘Cats struck first in the 46th minute, when junior Liz Finley (Mason, Ohio) took a pass from Manso and buried in the back of the net. The goal gave Ohio a 1-0 lead. It marked Manso's team-leading 11th point of the season.
Buffalo answered back in the 49th minute with a shot on goal, but Liston rejected the attempt to preserve the Bobcat lead. After 20 minutes in which Buffalo controlled possession, Liston again rejected a Buffalo attempt in the 74th minute to keep Ohio in front. Then, the Ohio turned away a number of Bulls corner and shot opportunities in the final minutes to preserve the victory.
With the victory, Ohio improves to 4-1-2 on the road this season.
“We’ve got two tough games at home this week and we’re happy to be back,” Rodgers said. “We have to get some training in this week and work on creating a rhythm, possessing the ball and creating more chances. If we match the fight and energy we had today and combine it with a good attacking rhythm, we’ll come out with some great results.”
Ohio returns to action next weekend with a pair of home matches at Chessa Field. Ohio hosts West Division foes Eastern Michigan (Friday, 4 p.m.) and Western Michigan (Sunday, 1 p.m.).