ORONO, Maine – The University of Maine soccer team ended its 2017 season with a win on Sunday afternoon, with Emilie Andersen’s first career goal on a 77th-minute penalty kick lifting the Black Bears to 1-0 win over the UMass Lowell River Hawks at Mahaney Diamond.
UMaine ends the year at 5-10-1 (2-3-3 America East) while UMass Lowell finishes 5-6-6 (3-5-0 AE).
While UMaine entered the final day of America East play with a chance to earn the sixth and final playoff spot and did what it need to do to stay alive – win – Vermont’s 2-0 victory over Stony Brook stopped the Black Bears from making it six-straight playoff appearances.
UML threatened to score right out of the gate, but Samantha Cobotic’s leaping punch of the long-distance free kick kept the game even in the second minute. The Black Bears settled down after the first 10 minutes and began to pound shots at UML keeper Julie Schneider.
Senior Amy Falkin sent a beautiful ball over the top to Kaitlyn Ball, only to have Schneider time her sliding save perfectly as Ball took her shot. Just a minute later, the Black Bears generated three shots in less than 20 seconds, but Schneider stopped another attempt from Ball and then Jane Stevens and Kayla Brace each had their attempts blocked in the box.
Despite the onslaught of offensive attempts from UMaine, the game entered halftime tied.
The River Hawks again had a chance early into the half, but a nice play by Kendra Ridley to dispossess a UML player at the edge of the 18 and headed for a 1-on-1 with Cobotic, kept it even. The hard-charging efforts of the Black Bears finally paid off in the 77th-minute when UML was whistled for a foul in the box and Andersen converted the penalty kick for her first career goal and the game-winning goal.
Cobotic (1-3-0) finished with five saves as did Schneider (5-5-6). Nine different Black Bears attempted at least one shot, with UMaine holding a final 16-10 edge over UML in that category. Corner kicks were even at 5-5.
(Maine 77′) Andersen’s right-footed shot stayed low to the ground, making it past Schneider into the left corner of the net.
UMaine now holds an edge of 5-0-0 in the all-time series with UML.
Andersen became the sixth Black Bear this season to find the net for the first time.
The penalty kick conversion was the second of the season for UMaine, as Kayla Brace also had one in a 2-1 win over Marist on Sept. 10.