SMC set for MIAA tournament
By SARAH RYKOWSKI
The Belles are set to contend for a slot in postseason play as they begin the MIAA tournament today.
They played six games over break, finishing just under .500 in the conference at 2-3.
On Oct. 16, the Belles defeated Alma 2-0 in an away match.
"I think its one of the best games we've played," Coach Jason Milligan said.
The Belles had a total of 15 shots on goal. Senior co-captain Katy Barger led her team with five shots. In the first half, one of her shots resulted in an unassisted goal.
Adrian Kirby, Tia Kappahahn, Mary Campe and Laura Paulen each had two shots. Lynn Taylor and Liz Coley each added one attempt.
Taylor's shot resulted in the other goal for Saint Mary's, also in the first half. Paulen assisted Taylor on that goal.
"Against Alma we really moved the ball around well," Milligan said.
Belles' goalie Brie Gershick shut out Alma with 6 saves.
At home on Oct. 17, the Belles fell to Washington University in a non-conference match.
The Belles lost 3-1 in an away game against Hope College on Oct. 20.
"On Wednesday we really didn't play well," Milligan said. "It was a game we expected to win. Hope came out and got a couple of early goals."
All of Hope's goals were scored in the first half.
"They came out quickly and were fired up," Milligan said. "It definitely wasn't one of our favorite games."
Saint Mary's had 14 shots on goal. Freshman Heather Muth scored for the Belles in the second half with an assist from senior co-captain Erin McCabe.
Gershick had six saves against Hope.
Saint Mary's crushed Defiance 5-0 on Oct. 23. in their the final regular season game for the Belles.
The Belles had 30 shots on goal. Barger led her team with seven attempts, one goal and four assists.
"It was senior day and we wanted all of our seniors to score," Milligan said. "Katie [Barger], Rachel [Egger], Liz [Coley] scored, and Erin [McCabe] got an assist."
Saint Mary's soccer team went 2-4 overall and 2-3 in conference play over fall break.
Egger and McCabe followed Barger with five shots each. Egger, a crucial defensive asset for the Belles, scored her second goal of the season.
Taylor and Muth shot four times each.
Senior Liz Coley had two shots and scored the first goal two minutes into the first half. Paulen, Kirby, and Katy Robinson each had a shot. Kirby scored the fourth goal for the Belles, and Robinson, normally a stopper, scored the fifth.
"As a last game [for the seniors] it was fun and successful whcih is what all games should be," Barger said. "It was a good game."
Saint Mary's allowed Defiance only one shot on Gershick. Gershick made the save and held Defiance scoreless against the Belles and winless for the season.
This season Barger made the MIAA's list of League Leaders for her goal assists. Barger is tied for fourth place with five assists this season.
"That's exciting for me," Barger said. "My primary role as center mid is to distribute the ball ... It shows that I'm doing my job."
Saint Mary's soccer team is now 9-5-2 overall and 3-4-1 in conference play.
"It's been a lot of fun and an honor to play with such talented teammates," Gershick said.
The Belles begin tournament action today at 3 p.m. at Olivet College.
"During the regular season [Saint Mary's loss to Olivet] was 3-0," Milligan said. "They have a couple of players who are pretty good. If we shut them down and finish our [scoring] opportunities we should walk away and play Calvin on Thursday. But it's going to be a hard fought game that'll be decided by a goal or two."
The winner of the Saint Mary's-Olivet game will play at Calvin College on Thursday at 3 pm.
"We're pumped for this game," Gershick said. "We're ready. We're in it to win it."
All Sports Stories for Tuesday, October 26, 1999