Women's College Soccer
Rider University 1, Loyola University Md. 1 (2ot)
LAWRENCEVILLE- On the Ben Cohen Field Saturday a classic paradox played out.
'What happens when an unstoppable force meets an immovable object?'
Loyola came into the game leading the conference in goals scored, and Rider came into the game leading the conference in least goals allowed.
The conclusion to the paradox? A draw.
The Broncs tied Loyola in a Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference game Saturday afternoon.
"I thought we played great," said Rider head coach Drayson Hounsome. "We're disappointed we didn't get three points (3 points for a win, 1 point for a tie) but the fact that we came away with something from the game is a big deal."
"I was coming across and Demi played an amazing ball in, right over the top of the defense," Ballay said. "I was just able to head it in."
The goal was the second in two games for Ballay and her team-high fourth of the season. "We moved her into more of an offensive position," Hounsome said of his rookie midfielder, "because she naturally attacks the ball.
The assist by Mello was her fourth of the season and eighth of her career.
Loyola (7-4-4, 3-1-1 MAAC) had taken a 1-0 lead in the 13th minute of play on a corner kick on a goal by Nichole Schiro, her ninth goal of the season.
Rider (7-3-3, 2-2-1 MAAC) out shot Loyola (7-4-4, 3-1-1 MAAC) 20-11. "Probably our best game of the season," Hounsome said. "We dominated the possession and dominated the shot count. We had some great chances to win it. We played hard."
Both teams had six shots on goal. Loyola had seven corner kicks to Rider's three.
Rider senior goalkeeper Jenn Nichols (Stratham, N.H./Exeter) made five saves.
Loyola has the most MAAC Titles (nine) and the most MAAC Tournament appearances (17) among all of the teams in the conference. "For us to out-play Loyola is a good thing," Hounsome said.
The Broncs lost 3-1 at Loyola last year. Rider defeated Loyola for the first time ever in 2010 in the regular season finale. "We've done well against them lately (1-1-1 last three years)," Hounsome said.
The Greyhounds hold a 17-1-3 advantage in the series, which includes four wins in postseason and a tie in the MAAC semifinals with Loyola advancing on penalty kicks. "Everyone did a great job of prepping the new people about Loyola," Ballay said. "We did a lot of preparing for this game."
Rider is 2-0-1 in its last three games, all conference games. "We're playing our best soccer now when we need to," Hounsome said.
The Broncs have two home games remaining. Rider hosts Canisius October 19 and Niagara October 21 on Senior Day. "We're looking to get some wins and get into the playoffs," Ballay said.