Giant Killers Strike Again

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Cross country Field hockey Football, volleyball, men’s soccer

Alyssa Meola Notice to ranked teams: fear the Mule!

The Muhlenberg women’s soccer team played the role of “giant killer” again, getting a late goal to knock off Dickinson, 1-0.

The Red Devils (6-3, 1-2) entered the game ranked sixth in the Mid-Atlantic Region. The Mules (4-6-1, 2-2) also own a win against Johns Hopkins, ranked 17th in Division III, and are responsible for the lone blemish on the record of 18th-ranked Montclair State (9-0-1).

“We get extremely pumped up for those teams,” said senior Alyssa Meola, who scored the goal with nine minutes left. “It really shows how much we want it.”

Meola’s team-leading fourth goal of the season came off a great long service into the box by senior Maggie Neary. Sophomore Colleen Touhey flicked it off her head, and Meola put it into the net.

That was all Muhlenberg would need. Freshman Francesca Cobuzzi made eight saves to notch her third shutout of the season. Dickinson had a 22-4 advantage in shots and an 8-0 edge in corners kicks, but according to Meola (right), those numbers are a little deceiving.

“They were shooting a lot from outside the 18,” she explained. “They weren’t great shots, more like hopeful shots. Some of them bounced before they got to our goalie.

“We work really hard at pressuring the ball,” she added. “That’s also where some of the corners come from. We’ll stick out our legs and try anything we can to keep the other team from getting a cross off.”

That approach has led to the Mules allowing fewer than two goals in nine of their last 10 games. And it doesn’t stop with the back four, which includes Neary, juniors Susan Galgano and Stephanie Tramutola and sophomore Krissy Fioretti.

“We pressure all over the field,” said Neary. “Even our forwards pressure the other team’s backs. It works really well for us.”

Especially against ranked teams.
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