GC Soccer vs Lander

GC soccer hosted Lander University in an important conference game for their final game of the regular season on October 22. The Bobcats fought hard during this game to try and claim the number four spot in the PBC. 

Starting out the game, Lander held most of the possession of the ball. Although the Bearcats put pressure on GC, the Bobcat defense shut down Lander’s strong offense. 

 The GC offense came out slow at the start of the game. While they were able to make good runs, they did not have enough support up top to make an impact. 

As the Bobcats offense became more alive, this did not stop Lander’s offense. The Bearcats remained strong up top as well as on defense. GC did not have many opportunities offensively. 

Freshman forward Sarah Mason made great runs off passes from the midfielders and defenders, but without support from the forwards there was little success coming from these runs.

Throughout most of the first half the Bobcats did not put much pressure on Lander’s offense, which allowed the Bearcats to keep much of the possession and move more easily up the field. This allowed the Bearcats to have many opportunities in scoring position. 

Towards the end of the first half, the Bobcats put more pressure on Lander while also having better ball movement. 

At the end of the first half, the Bearcats outshot GC 8-3. With the support of the strong defense and goalkeeper Kate Richardson, GC came out of the half tied 0-0.

The start of the second half looked like the first. Lander controlled most of the possessions.

With 18 minutes left in the game, Kate Richarson faced more difficult shots on goal. Richardson was faced a one-on-one against Lander’s forward Annika Seifart. Richardson made a great save due to her aggressiveness inside the box.

In the 74th minute of the game Lander received a free kick outside the box after a foul from junior Taylor Salvaggio. Alaire Hodge placed the ball at the very top of the goal, unreachable for Richardson, giving the Bearcats the lead 1-0.

The Bobcats were not discouraged after this goal and fought harder trying to make up for it. GC moved the ball up the field more in the last minutes of the game. While they were able to make good passes in the box, the Bobcats did not have good touches on their shots, causing many to go off target.

With five minutes remaining the Bobcats were finally able to make a successful run up the field.  After a pass from senior Alexis Bergamini, Sarah Mason took a shot from outside of the box. The shot deflected off the goalie’s gloves and into the back of the net. 

Although there were multiple good runs from both teams in the final minutes, both teams’ strong defense forced a tie, 1-1, to end the regular season. 

While this was not the way that the Bobcats hoped to end their final home game of the season, they pushed hard at the end to at least tie the game.

“I don’t think we played as well as we could,” Salvaggio said. “We definitely pushed though in the last 15 minutes to at least tie the game for us.” 

The slow start caused many missed opportunities for the Bobcats early on.

“As a team, if we came out stronger at the beginning instead of individually going out on the field strong it would have been better,” Mason said. “I think this was a big factor that we need to improve on.”

After this tie the Bobcats did not move in the PBC rankings leaving them at number six. The Bobcats will face the number three seed, North Georgia.

“I think we need to take momentum away from this game,” Richardson said. “We need to understand that we are going to Flagler to play North Georgia as the underdog. We need to go into this with the motivation that we were the better team during the season, and this is our time to prove that we are better than certain teams that we couldn’t get a result on during the season. 

Unfortunately, the Bobcats did not get far into the PBC Tournament after losing to North Georgia 4-2 in the first round ending their season.