FLORENCE, SC – Senior Nicole Ferren and sophomore Morgan Patton each registered a goal and an assist to help power Belmont Abbey College to a 3-1 win over Francis Marion University, Saturday afternoon (Sept. 2) in women's college soccer action.
Francis Marion (1-1-0) was looking to start its season 2-0 for the first time in 17 seasons. Belmont Abbey also evens its season mark at 1-1-0.
The Patriots will play host to Newberry College on Wednesday at 5 p.m. for the squad's annual Sea of Red match.
Trailing 1-0 entering the second stanza, FMU had two opportunities to even the score. Freshman Sarah Moll's 25-yard blast only 40 seconds after halftime skipped off the top of the crossbar. Two minutes later, an offside call against the Patriots – ruling that an FMU player affected the outcome of the play even though she did not touch the ball – negated a 40-yard free kick goal by freshman defender Dayle McEwen.
Ferren took a service from Patton and scored from 19 yards out in the 53rd minute to push the margin to 2-0. Kat Laughlin scored the Crusaders' third goal at 61:00 when she took a drop pass from Chandler Arrowood and buried a 21-yard shot from the middle of the field.
Francis Marion battled back and trimmed the margin to 3-1 at the 70:01 mark. Freshman forward Kylie McElroy made a long run with the ball up the left sideline before crossing the ball to freshman midfielder Megan Misuraca who knocked in a 12-yard blast.
The Patriots had several chances to cur further into the Crusader lead. Moll forced a save by Belmont Abbey goalkeeper Kaitlyn Paul in the 80th minute and then had an opportunity from 10 yards out inside the penalty area in the 87th minute that sailed high and over the crossbar.
McElroy had a final scoring chance in the dying seconds after an FMU corner kick, but again the ball soared over the crossbar.
FMU junior goalkeeper Janine Gordon finished with four saves, in addition to corralling several crosses and key loose balls during the final 45 minutes.
Paul finished with three saves as Belmont Abbey outshot Francis Marion 11-7. FMU led in corner kicks 5-4.
Patton and Ferren reversed roles in the opening half to put Belmont Abbey up 1-0 when Patton scored on a 15-yard shot in the 20th minute.
Belmont Abbey Coll. (1-1-0) def. Francis Marion Univ. (1-1-0) 3-1
Date: Sep 02, 2017 Attendance: 125
Weather: Mostly Cloudy, 84, Humid, Winds 8 mph
Goals by period 1 2 Tot
Belmont Abbey Coll.. 1 2 - 3
Francis Marion Univ. 0 1 - 1
1-0. 19:07 BAC-W Morgan Patton (1) (Nicole Ferren) - 15 yard shot from right side angle after through ball
2-0. 52:16 BAC-W Nicole Ferren (2) (Morgan Patton) - Service from left, 19 yard shot past keeper from middle of field
3-0. 61:00 BAC-W Kat Laughlin (1) (Chandler Arrowood) - Rebound of blocked shot goes to top of 18, 21-yard shot from there
3-1. 70:01 FMU_W Megan Misuraca (1) (Kylie McElroy) long run up left side, cross, then 12-yard shot
Shots: Belmont Abbey Coll. 11, Francis Marion Univ. 7 ; Saves: Belmont Abbey Coll. 3 (Kaitlyn Paul 3), Francis Marion Univ. 4 (Janine Gordon 4)