SWEET BRIAR, Va. --- Vixen Soccer played its first home game of the season on Saturday afternoon at Babcock Field. The non-conference contest with Bryn Mawr College featured a new look for the home venue; a contemporary re-design situates the field parallel to the grandstand. Although the young Sweet Briar side gained momentum on several key plays, the visiting Owls wrested the opening day win.
Bryn Mawr scored its first goal in the opening minutes. Nina Bertolami '16 (Glenmoore, Pa./Owen J. Roberts), moving up the left flank, switched the attack with a long cross-field pass to teammate Allegra Levy '16 (Torrance, CA / Chadwick School). Levy collected the ball on the right side and fired a shot, beating SBC first-year keeper Katherine Tillson (Mechanicsville, Va. /Atlee). Minutes later Caitlin Homstad '16 (Culver City, Calif. / Marymount) found the back of the net again for the Owls. This time the Owls' score came off a header just inside the six. Hannah Broderick '16 (North Kingstown, R.I. / The Wheeler School) fired a shot, pulling Tillson near side. Tillson tipped the ball, but a well-positioned Homstad sent home the drifting orb.
Sweet Briar countered with attacks from its left flank. Ashley Federico '16 (Milford, N.H./Milford) and Emily Spivey '15 (Dillwyn, Va. / Buckingham County) combined midway through the half, but could not quite work a shot on goal. Angelina Peck '14 (Falls Church, Va./Home Schooled) created the most dangerous attack for the Vixen squad. Peck found herself with an open look at goal, but her shot sailed just over the crossbar in the 27th minute.
After intermission, with the Owls leading by two goals, SBC took advantage of a Bryn Mawr foul. Marissa McCord '15 (Asheville, N.C./T. C. Roberson) blasted a free kick, which struck the defending wall. On the counter-attack, Ava Simond '16 (Wilder, Vt. / Hartford) made the first of her game's two blocks. The former keeper turned field player, calmly knocked away a shot to prevent the score off a corner kick and the home team appeared to grab momentum at the 55:24 mark. Simond was equal to the task again nearly 13 minutes later off a similar play.
Bryn Mawr kept the pressure on though and continued to generate offensive threats. Despite successfully defending all that came their way in the second, the home team could not find the back of the net. Assistant Coach Amy Dahlin noted that, "this team is resilient, we had some good invidual play and now we need to string those pieces together."
With the non-league portion of its schedule now complete, SBC begins the always-rugged Old Dominion Athletic Conference playing schedule. On Wednesday, September 12, the team travels to Emory, Va. for a 5: 30 p.m. match with Emory & Henry College.