NEWTON, Mass. – The Boston College women’s soccer team defeated Hofstra 2-0 on Friday night at the New Campus Soccer Field behind a goal and an assist from All-ACC First Team selection Kristen Mewis to advance to the second round of the NCAA College Cup.
The Eagles opened the scoring in the 12th minute through Stephanie McCaffrey, who chipped the keeper after getting the ball from Mewis. The Eagles controlled the game from then on before Mewis would put the game out of reach in the 81st minute.
“We talked about it before the game and we said it would be good to get ahead in the first 15 minutes and get a goal,” said BC head coach Alison Foley. “I think we you do that, it allows you to play your style a little bit more, it takes a bit of the pressure off, and then we’re able to keep the ball and not force things.”
The win improves BC to 11-7-3 on the season, while Hofstra dropped to 11-8-2. BC will play an opponent to be determined in the second round on Nov. 16.
The Eagles had a good chance under two minutes into the match when Mewis was played into space just outside the box. Mewis dribbled into the right side of the box, but took a touch before shooting, allowing Pride ‘keeper Emily Morphitis to rush off her line and close down the angle. Mewis blasted a shot on frame, but Morphitis made the save.
Hofstra threatened ten minutes in, finding space down the left flank. Freshman Leah Galton got forward and sent a low cross in front of goal that rolled tantalizingly past the goalmouth, but eluded everyone on its way out of the box.
“It’s not what we had hoped for,” said Pride head coach Simon Riddiough. “We hoped to attack for the first 20-25 [minutes]. It’s frustrating; I would’ve liked to see a little bit more than we did.”
The Eagles took the lead in the 12th minute through McCaffrey. McCaffrey received the ball from Mewis just outside the box and chipped the ball over an onrushing Emily Morphitis to give BC the early lead. The goal was McCaffrey’s 10th of the season. The Winchester, Mass. Native earned All-ACC second team honors this year.
“From the backline we started and we worked really hard to move the ball up the field,” said Mewis. “There was a lot of space for [McCaffrey], who is pretty much the fastest girl on our team. There was some open space in front of her because the backline was sitting up a little bit. I just kind of clipped her a little ball over the top and she ran onto it and chipped it over the goalie. It was really skillful of her.”
Boston College nearly doubled their lead in the 29th minute through Kate McCarthy. The Eagles got the ball in the attacking third off a Hofstra turnover and McCarthy, a Longmeadow, Mass. Native, ran in on goal before blasting a shot on frame just inside the box. McCarthy’s effort dipped in on goal, but Morphitis managed to just tip it over the net.
While BC continued to control the play, Hofstra threatened from distance in the 35th minute. Caylin Douglas attempted a shot from 25 yards that went just high of BC’s net.
The Eagles came closest to doubling their lead in the 41st minute when Vicki DiMartino got the ball in the right side of the box and ran towards goal. Morphitis was again quick off her line to cut down the angle and block the shot.
BC would enter halftime with a 1-0 lead and a nine to two advantage in shots.
Chances were few and far between to start the second half, but BC sparked the game back to life in the 67th minute when Casey Morrison rose up to get a head to a corner kick from Patrice Vettori. Morrison’s shot was on frame, but Morphitis was there to make the save.
A couple minutes later, Hofstra’s Jeannie Molleda fired a shot on frame, but BC’s Alexa Gaul made the save.
Then, seconds later, it was the Eagles with another opportunity with McCaffrey challenging Morphitis at the top of the box. The BC striker nearly got around Morphitis, but the keeper just managed to tap the ball away.
Hofstra looked dangerous on the counterattack in the 75th minute as Lulu Echeverry broke behind the BC defense, but Morrison managed to track back and put pressure enough pressure on to force the sophomore midfielder to shoot wide.
Mewis then put the game out of reach in the 81st minute after picking up a deflected cross at the top of the box. Mewis dribbled into the box and blasted a left footed shot past Morphitis to make it 2-0. The goal was Mewis 14th of the season to go with 12 assists.
“Gibby Wagner worked really hard down the field, went straight to the endline and crossed it,” said Mewis. “I think there was some sort of deflection and then I just took a strong touch towards goal and put it on my left foot and placed it where the goalkeeper wasn’t.”
“The second [goal] was just as important as the first really,” said Foley. “I think if you look at our season, in critical moments of games and when games have been tight, it’s been Kristie Mewis who has answered the call. Top players, the best players in the country, know how to take care of business and to me that one just sealed off the game.”
The Eagles came close to adding a third goal in the 87th minute after a cross eluded Morphitis, but Wagner was unable to direct it on frame at the far post.
BC finished the match with a 19 to six advantage in shots.
BC will play the winner of top seeded Penn State’s game against Long Island University Brooklyn, who face off on Saturday at 6 p.m. The second round match between the Eagles and the winner of that match will take place on Nov. 16.