After Rain Delay, Berman Lifts BC Over St. John’s

A seemingly never-ending thunderstorm finally came to a close, and after an hour and a half delay, Boston College women’s soccer was finally ready for kickoff. In their final game prior to the ACC opener against Louisville on Sunday, the Eagles snuck past St. John’s, 1-0. With water flying off the ball with each rocketed kick, both BC and the Red Storm (4-3-1) saw emotions rise as they kept themselves going despite the rain.

Early on, sophomore Jenna Bike kicked a sharp leading pass down the field to freshman standout Sam Coffey, who narrowly missed a key scoring opportunity when a defender caught up to her and stole the ball just in time. Fortunately for the Eagles, the mishap turned into a corner kick, which resulted in Coffey scarcely missing an assist.

This was one of several first-half corner kicks for Coffey and the Eagles (6-3), which leads the nation in such attempts. Averaging a whopping 9.83 corner kicks a game, they ended up racking up 10 on Thursday evening.

Bike continuously set up redshirt senior Lauren Berman in the first half with shot attempts, but none of them could land in the net.

With nine minutes left in the first half, junior Carly Leipzig checked in for BC. Just two minutes later she was on the receiving end of a lucky break, where a pass from her teammate rolled in between a defender’s legs, and allowed her to orchestrate yet another corner kick.

Within the first 10 minutes of the second half, BC saw four corner kicks (two kicked by Coffey, two by freshman Mijke Roelfsema). All four had end points near their intended destinations, but were either blocked or knocked away by the opposing goalie. The last of these corners also saw St. John’s players repeating their anger showed in the first half toward what they saw as a “lack of calls” by the referees.

The bulk of the second half saw much of the same as the first, with fast-paced play from the Eagles. The Red Storm, meanwhile, constantly tried to keep up and slowed the pace of the contest when it could. This speed of play, combined with the 90-minute rain delay, caused frustration from the Storm’s players and coaching staff.

In the 84th minute, Berman beat out a defender and worked her way around the goalie to put in BC’s only goal of the game after a magnificent throw in from junior Elysa Virella. Berman stayed hot in this one, after posting a goal and an assist in last Sunday’s 3-0 victory against Boston University. While the Eagles had their time to celebrate and let some of the pressure squander off, the Red Storm went into panic mode and, for the first time, tried to speed up the game. But St. John’s couldn’t net the equalizer, and returned home with a slim one-goal defeat.

The late momentum that propelled BC to its exciting win over St. John’s will need to carry over to Sunday’s conference opener if head coach Alison Foley & Co. want to start the ACC slate with a win.

Featured Image by Lizzy Barrett / Heights Editor

September 15, 2017