ITHACA, N.Y. – The University of Maine women’s soccer team pushed for an equalizer in the second half on Saturday, but a Cornell goal on a penalty kick in the first half proved to be the difference in a 1-0 decision at Berman Field.
Cornell (2-3-0) scored the game’s only goal in the 17th-minute when UMaine (2-5-1) was whistled for a foul inside the box and Kaili Gregory converted from the dot.
Annalena Kriebisch kept the Black Bears within reach with three key saves in the first half. The sophomore squared up to a Big Red player on the left side of the box and deflecting the close-range shot and then in the middle of a scrum off a corner kick, shot out her leg to make a split save. With just minutes to play in the opening stanza, Kriebisch again made a quick, reactionary save to her left in the middle of a scrum. The keeper finished with five saves total in the first half.
The Black Bears transitioned the other way after Kriebisch’s 42nd-minute save and got their best change of the half when Kaitlyn Ballripped a shot from the top of the box that found the stomach of Meghan Kennedy.
UMaine started to get more chances in the second half with some aggressive play in the first 15 minutes. Emilie Andersen found herself in the box with the ball off a long throw but her shot was blocked then Jane Stevens beat the crowd to corner from Nicole Bailey but the ball went over the crossbar. The Black Bears continued to push for the equalizing goal and worked off the ball to get towards goal but couldn’t quite get through the last line of the Big Red defense.
Kriebisch had several more critical saves to keep UMaine in the game, none bigger than her 82nd-minute stop at the top of a box on a 1-on-1. Kriebisch (2-5-1) finished with eight saves while Kennedy (2-3-0) registered one for the Big Red.
Andersen led UMaine with three shots. Cornell held the final edge in shots (22-7) and corner kicks (5-4).
After a few Big Red players muscled their way into the box, the Black Bears played the body and Cornell was awarded a penalty kick. Kaili Gregory stepped up to the spot and sent it into the lower right corner.