Strong defensive play, offensive drive lifts Bengals over D’Youville

Tony Callens, Staff Writer


Dominating the shot totals and possession has become the norm for the Buffalo State women’s soccer team, and that trend continued in their 2-1 victory on Thursday at D’Youville College.

The Bengals jumped to a 2-0 lead in the first half on the back of 14 shots while their defense did not allow the Spartans to record one.

Senior defender Kristina Change attributed the defensive success to the chemistry and experience of playing with her fellow senior teammates.

“Well Gab (Boldinski), Kristin (Seiferth) and I have known each other for four years now,” she said. “We understand how each of us plays and we are comfortable playing together.”

Change gave credit to junior Emma Laffey’s chemistry with her teammates as well.

“She’s been playing with us for three years and she’s been a great asset to our back line,” she said. “Since we have a few years’ experience under us, it’s not too hard to bring freshman in and help them develop like we have in the past.”

Forward Tianna Hatch built off her performance against Pitt-Bradford with the opening goal in the 10th minute. Fellow forward, senior Meghan Allen, who didn’t start in the Pitt-Bradford game, started this game against D’Youville and tallied the second and eventual game winner in the 21st minute.

“It was definitely a hard fought game and extremely aggressive,” Allen said. “It was good for us because when we enter SUNYAC play, it’ll be just as competitive.”

The game was physical and chippy, as is to be expected in a contest between two teams separated by just three and a half miles.

“This game went fairly well for us. It was an interesting test going into SUNYAC play,” head coach Nick DeMarsh said. “I didn’t agree with the way the game was officiated at times, but I liked how we responded to the physicality of the game.”

D’Youville finally broke through in the 57th minute, on only their third shot of the contest, when a ball swung into the box from the left side and deflected off of forward Rebecca Alvira.

The Spartans threatened again when a shot by midfielder Terra Jude struck the crossbar. That’s as close as D’Youville came to equalizing as Buffalo State buckled down defensively and did not allow a shot in the last 20 minutes.

“It has been huge for us,” Allen said of the success and the rhythm the team has developed over the past few games. “Going in believing that we can score and compete has and will give us a huge edge on our competition.”

With only one game left before the Bengals begin SUNYAC play, DeMarsh has mixed but hopeful feelings about his team going forward.

“I like where we are as a team but there is still room to grow,” he said. “We have some time to improve until we start our SUNYAC schedule.”

Finishing off chances has been the crutch to the Bengals in previous games, but in the last two games they have improved in that area and it has showed.

“I think we’re playing pretty well together,” Change said. “We have learned something new after every game so far and I think we’ll definitely be ready for Brockport and Geneseo.”

Buffalo State will next set their sights on Case Western Reserve in Cleveland, Ohio before SUNYAC play begins on Friday.