(MSU Billings release)
BILLINGS – Scoring twice within two minutes at Yellowjacket Field on Thursday, Saint Martin’s University forward Kylee Sarchett lifted her team to a 2-0 shutout win over the Montana State University Billings women’s soccer team in Great Northwest Athletic Conference action.
The ‘Jackets had a narrow 10-9 edge in shots in an overall evenly-played game, but the Saints put their foot on the gas late and capitalized in the attacking third. “This was a tough game and a tough result for us,” said MSUB head coach Stephen Cavallo. “We really seemed to lack quality in our technique and decision making in the most crucial moments in the game. Credit to Saint Martin’s for executing their game plan against us, and hitting us on the counter twice in a matter of minutes.”
With the defeat, MSUB falls to 4-5-1 overall and is now 1-4 in GNAC play. The Saints meanwhile picked up their first league win of the year, improving to 5-6 and 1-5 in conference action.
MSUB’s first chance came on a cross from Cassidy O’Dell into the box 15 minutes into the match. Amanda Grimshaw was able to get a shot on frame, but SMU goalkeeper Ali Koehler made her first stop of the match. Koehler had five stops in the opening 45 minutes, and added one more in the second to earn her first shutout of the 2018 season.
The ‘Jackets held a 6-3 advantage in shots in the first half, but the game remained 0-0 by the break. Sarchett’s first finish came in the 67th minute, when she collected a deflection from inside the goal box at the top corner on the right side. From there, she lifted a left-footed strike into the far-upper corner of the net to give SMU a 1-0 lead.
Less than two minutes later, the Saints struck again on another breakaway, as this time Sarchett was fed an excellent through ball by Kiersten Madsen. Sarchett got to it just ahead of an oncoming Erinn Harder, and nudged it towards the far corner where it kissed the post before bouncing into the net.
The ‘Jackets had three shots over the final 20 minutes, but couldn’t manage a dangerous attempt towards goal the rest of the match. O’Dell led the team with five attempts, and matched her season high with two landing on target. Harder made three saves for MSUB between the posts, and Kalin Sandow played a full 90 minutes defensively.
“Overall we simply did not have enough quality today to get the result needed,” Cavallo said. “We will need to accept this, move on, and get ready for a very strong SPU team on Saturday.”
Sarchett had her second multi-goal performance of the year, and moved to No. 2 on the team with four goals behind leading-scorer Madsen (5). She also had two goals in a 3-2 win for SMU against Evergreen on September 11.
THE BUZZ: Jordan Devoto was picked as the St. Vincent Healthcare Player of the Game…MSUB is now 12-8-2 all-time against the Saints and is 6-5 in home matches.
NEXT UP: Seattle Pacific University visits MSUB on Saturday, for a 12:30 p.m. kickoff in Game 1 of a doubleheader with the men’s team.