Emory’s women’s soccer team emphatically rebounded from two consecutive losses at the Roanoke (Va.) Invitational with a convincing 4-0 defeat of regional rival Birmingham-Southern College (Ala.) Friday.
Going into the match, both teams were trying to break out of a slump — Emory had lost their past two games while Birmingham had lost their last three.
The entirety of the encounter saw Emory dominate. The Eagles opened their account in the 12th minute when sophomore midfielder Madison Phaneuf netted her first career goal. Phaneuf’s effort was one to remember, as she blazed the net with a long-distance cracker off an assist from junior midfielder Melissa Ardizzone.
Seven minutes later, Phaneuf was in the thick of the action again. This time, she provided the assist for sophomore forward Abbe McCarter, who lobbed the ball over the head of Birmingham-Southern’s goalkeeper Ansley Tomlin, doubling Emory’s lead.
Despite being ahead by two goals at halftime, the Eagles were far from done. They returned to the pitch with fire in their bellies at the start of the second half, and within 10 minutes had put the game beyond reasonable doubt with a third goal.
The third effort was steered in by sophomore forward Grace Edgarton following a shot that came off the post. The fourth and final goal came three minutes later when sophomore forward Danielle Darius buried the ball in the Birmingham-Southern net off a well-worked possession from sophomore forward Sophia Dillon and freshman forward Shivani Beall.
The Eagles’ performance was impressive, to say the least, as the Eagles shut out the Panthers and ensured that freshman goalkeeper Haley Pratt remained untested throughout the duration of the game and recorded her first clean sheet.
Head Coach Sue Patberg was moved by how Emory controlled the game and particularly highlighted the second half as the more exciting half.
“The second half was significantly more interesting, as we created a lot more opportunities and raised the level of our game,” Patberg said. “Overall, we had no defensive breakdowns and altogether regained some confidence in ourselves after two losses in Virginia.”
Phaneuf admitted that the Eagles were indeed disappointed by their prior performances and saw the trip to Alabama as an opportunity to redeem themselves.
“We were really just looking to increase our confidence, play good soccer and score some goals so that when we go into our [University Athletic Association (UAA)] conference, we’re able to take on some of those tougher teams like Washington University (Mo.) and University of Chicago (Ill.).”
The Eagles will look to build on Friday’s performance when they host Berry College (Ga.) at the WoodPEC Wednesday.