The traveling Siena Saints put on a show for their visiting fans, thrashing Marist women’s soccer 4-0 in Poughkeepsie on Wednesday.
A young squad helped Siena (3-6-2, 2-1-1 MAAC) ease past the Red Foxes (2-6-3, 2-2-1 MAAC), highlighted by two goals from freshman midfielder Abby Daly. Marist was held without a shot on goal for the second time this season.
“I don’t think they were four goals better than us,” said Marist head coach Nicole Pacapelli. “This game doesn’t change anything [for us].”
The two teams came into the match with similar conference and overall records. Marist looked to play with some momentum behind sophomore goalkeeper Maddy Catalanotti. Catalanotti was named the MAAC Defender of the Week after her six-save shutout against Manhattan.
The Red Foxes started the game with pace and intensity, something they have struggled to maintain throughout an entire half. Graduate student forward Brooke Cergol made two runs up the right wing, sending a cross in, but no one could get on the end of it.
Against the run of play, Siena sophomore forward Cate Flanagan ripped the first shot of the game in the fifth minute from the right side of the box. Catalanotti caught it, making her 17th consecutive save following shutouts in her previous two starts.
The quick nature of the match persisted for the first 10 minutes, but as the game continued, Siena found their legs and maintained more and more of the possession.
The Saint’s offensive prowess began to show, pushing the Red Foxes farther and farther back into their own half.
Siena finally capitalized on their relentless pressure in the 26th minute when the ball ricocheted to the far left corner of the Marist penalty box.
Catalanotti came out to collect the ball but didn’t secure it, and Daly was there to steal it. The Siena freshman took three touches and slotted the ball into the open net for her second goal in consecutive games.
“The first goal was s***,” said Pacapelli. “I think that kind of killed us.”
The visitors continued to create opportunities and test Catalanotti, including a low shot from the top of the box by sophomore midfielder Iona Snape in the 32nd minute. Marist earned some possession throughout the later part of the second half but could not get past the Saints’ back three.
Siena continuously rotated in substitutions, making six throughout the first half. Pacapelli waited until the 38th minute to make her first swap. It was clear that after defending Siena’s persistent attack, the Red Foxes on the pitch were tired.
“[I was] trying to let the kids grind it out for a little bit and figure it out,” said Pacapelli. “I don’t think it was [the fault] of those kids on the field.”
The Saints took full advantage of their strong first half, doubling their lead in the 43rd minute. Senior midfielder Gabby DeAngelis sent a cross from the right side into the box; Snape flicked it on for junior forward, Cora Keohane, who tapped the ball past the onrushing Catalanotti.
Senior midfielder Chance Hendricks called the whole team together after conceding the goal to help refocus the frustrated Marist squad. At halftime, the Red Foxes trailed 6-2 in total shots.
“Myself and everyone else was just saying let’s get through it, and we’ll make adjustments at halftime,” said Hendricks.
Siena came out of the break with the same intensity and pressure to start the second half, which earned them a quick three-goal lead against a Marist team that has not scored more than one goal in a game this season.
Daly won the ball off a Catalanotti punt near midfield, played a quick give-and-go with a teammate, made a solo run to the top of the box and launched her second goal of the game into the bottom right corner.
Marist, realizing the steep hill they had to climb, began sending more numbers up but the Saints’ defense remained strong. Marist’s play remained on the perimeter and could not muster any dangerous scoring chances.
The Red Foxes got continuously frustrated in the second half – senior midfielder Amanda Caldarelli was assessed a yellow card in the 63rd minute.
Marist began holding more possession in their attacking half, but the elusive first shot on goal never came.
Siena kept earning quality chances on the counterattack – nearly getting a fourth goal in the 73rd minute when freshman forward Julia Dening was fed the ball in the middle of the field but missed wide.
The Saints iced the game in the 78th minute when freshman forward Megan Stowell floated a cross in for senior forward Annie Bagnall, who stuck her foot out to chip the ball over Catalanotti and into the net.
In the end, Marist was outshot 17-6 and 11-0 for shots on goal. Siena is now tied with Marist for fourth place in the MAAC but holds an extra game in hand.
“[We’ve] got to shake it off; our season’s not over,” said Pacapelli. “We’re still in the running for everything.”
The Red Foxes must have a short memory as they prepare to face Mount St. Mary’s on Saturday, still looking for their first home victory.
Edited by: Aidan Lavin
Photo Credit: Jaylen Rizzo