By Andrew Zuhosky
Going into the Sept. 6 home match vs. Robert Morris University, the Youngstown State soccer team hadn’t scored a goal since the 79th minute of the 2-1 loss to Army on Aug. 28, approximately two matches ago.
That streak continued on Sunday as the Penguins were shut out for the third straight match, 1-0 at the hands of the Colonials.
At minute 35:00 Robert Morris scored on an unassisted goal by junior forward Antonia Grese, her first of the season, it accounted for the only score of the contest on her only shoot attempt of the game.
Within the 62:00 minute of the game, an apparent YSU goal, which would have tied the match, was waived off due to an offside penalty.
With Sunday’s result, Robert Morris picks up its first win of the year, moving to a 1-4 record on the campaign, while YSU falls to 2-4.
YSU was led in the stats column by sophomore midfielder Kyler Lum, who had three shot attempts and one shot on goal. Katie Hackos Abby Kenski, and Chauntel Houk each had two shot attempts, with Houk and Hackos combining for three shot attempts on target.
Robert Morris outshot YSU by a 15-11 margin, and eight of the Colonials’ shots were on target. Of YSU’s 11 shots, four were on goal. Robert Morris also took four corner kicks in the match, YSU didn’t attempt a corner kick.
Robert Morris was led by senior forward Madison Kozlowski’s six shots and three shots on goal. Senior midfielder Kristie Hamilton and sophomore forward Greer Monahan each had two shot attempts in the contest.
Starting YSU goalkeeper Katie Montgomery recorded three saves in just over 40 minutes of action on Sunday before leaving the contest due to injury. Elizabeth Balgoyen went the rest of the way, notching four saves.
Robert Morris goalkeeper Chelsea DeJager made four saves in the shutout.
Following the game, head coach Will Lemke discussed his team’s performance.
“After the Central Michigan [University] game, we knew we had to come back out and have a better opening start, especially the first 10 to 15 minutes were going to define the game, we felt,” he said. “We didn’t come out well, we didn’t win the 50/50 battles in that first half and gave up an early goal. We had a hard time regaining control of the game until the second half.”
Next week’s games are against Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne and University of Findlay. Lemke said his team needed to improve on heading into the contests next week.
“We have to do a better job of starting games,” he said. “We have to make sure that we’re composed and get into our pattern, play our system and just stay sound offensively and defensively to start the game and then we need people to finish. We had the best opportunity of the game today and we blew it, so we need to make sure we’re finishing, as well.”
Lemke didn’t know of any further information about Montgomery’s first half injury following the game.
“I know she got hit in the head,” he said. “We’ll have to see what the trainer says. It’s the second time she’s had a head injury this year. We’re not protecting our keeper.”
Lemke took a moment to reflect on Friday’s opponent, the IPFW Mastodons.
“We’ve got another team that’s hungry and hasn’t had a win,” he said. “They’ve been trying to hang in there with teams, so they’re having a tough go of it so far. They’re going to be coming in hungry and we have to be prepared for that.”
Kickoff of Friday’s match is at 7:00 p.m. at Farmer’s National Bank Field, followed by a Sunday matinee against Findlay at 1:00 p.m.