The Engineers met another rough patch this week as they finished their Liberty League campaign and are about to enter the home stretch for the season.
The Engineers traveled to the Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts last Tuesday to face the Trailblazers in a non-conference match. RPI opened up the first half with an assertive strategy that enabled them to score a goal in the second minute of play. Freshman Kelsey Byrne was able to guide the ball to freshman Nikki Goodsell who placed it right in the net. The Engineers continued to keep the Trailblazers at bay for the next twenty minutes until freshman goalkeeper Melissa Pinsonneault let the ball slip by, allowing MCLA to score its first point. The Engineers managed to outshoot the Trailblazers 14-4, but could not break the tie for the remainder of the first half.
The second half did not see a break for RPI, as the women continued to try to build an advantage over MCLA. Although the Engineers again outshot the Trailblazers 12-4 in the second half, the Trailblazers were able to score twice more during the period, bringing the score to 3-1 at the conclusion of the game. Pinsonneault ended the day with 4 saves while the MCLA goalkeeper finished with 16 saves throughout the game.
On Saturday, the Engineers hosted the Clarkson University Golden Knights in an eventful match. Eighteen minutes in, lightning and thunder delayed the game for 45 minutes and eventually forced relocation to the East Campus Stadium. Almost immediately after the restart, the Golden Knights took control of a rebound from inside the six-yard area for the only goal of the game. The Engineers had many close calls in the second half, but none of their shots developed into successful goals. RPI outshot the Golden Knights 18-9 overall, including 10-4 in the final 45 minutes, but finished behind Clarkson 0-1.
The Engineers closed up their Liberty League season in a match against St. Lawrence University on Sunday. The Saints managed to capture the first lead of the game in minute 26 when the ball went just out of reach from Pinsonneault. St. Lawrence managed to score another goal in the first half, increasing its lead to 2-0 at the break. Despite RPI’s 11-9 shot advantage over the Saints, the Engineers were unable to make their way past the St. Lawrence goalkeeper. A number of the Engineers’ best shots were from freshman Shannon Maguire who tallied five attempts in the first half.
The second half was met with equal difficulty as the Saints continued to score and the Engineers continued to search for weak spots in the Saints’ defense line. RPI was not able to gain an advantage, however, and the game ended with the Saints in the lead 0-4. The Engineers held a slight advantage in shots 17-16 while the Saints had the edge in corner kicks, 5-3.
The Engineers finished up the Liberty League with a seventh place tie with Clarkson with a record of 1-6-0. William Smith College leads the Liberty League with a record of 5-0-2, followed by Skidmore College and Hamilton College. RPI currently has an overall record of 4-11-1 with two remaining games in their season. Next week the Engineers will host non-conference matches against Hartwick College at 7:30 pm in their official debut at the East Campus Stadium on October 28 and Utica College at 3 pm on October 31 at ECAV.