GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – The Michigan Tech soccer team battled hard, but came up short on the road 2-1 in a Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference match at Davenport University Sunday afternoon. The Huskies faced an early deficit in the first half and rallied with a goal late in the opening period, but unfortunately the Panthers maintained the edge at the final horn.
"Davenport was a good team, but we made some mistakes and missed some opportunities," Michigan Tech Head Coach Michelle Jacob said. "We battled hard and came up short. We'll get back to work at practice this week and get ready for a pair key GLIAC matches next weekend at home against Purdue Northwest and Parkside."
Michigan Tech (5-5-1, 0-4 GLIAC) quickly went on the attack Sunday and had the first look at the net as senior Marisa DeMario sent a kick just wide of the post in the fifth minute. Davenport (5-5, 3-1 GLIAC) countered though and about three minutes later had the first goal of the afternoon. Roheema Bennett collected her third goal of the 2018 season off an assist from Katherine Steiner.
The Panthers' defense kept Tech out of the attacking third over the next few minutes, which helped lead them to their second goal of the contest. This time Alayna Hilgendorf found the back of the net for her second goal of the year. Steiner picked up her second assist of the afternoon as she placed the ball on the foot of Hilgendorf for the one timed shot.
Trailing 2-0, the Huskies began to up the pressure on the Davenport defense in an effort to cut into the deficit. Sophomore Brooke Schauer launched a shot wide of the net in the 23rd minute followed by a shot on goal from freshman Grace Shaw in the 29th minute.
Freshman Gabby Sgambati got her first opportunity to challenge goalie Macie DeWyse in the 37th minute, and sent the ball just wide. However, Sgambati was on target with her next strike as she tucked the ball inside the post for a Huskies goal in the 39th minute. It was Sgambati's third goal of the season with the assist being credited to Shaw. It was Shaw's team leading fourth assist of the year. Tech then fired two more shots before the close of the half with one going wide and the other high to keep the score at 2-1.
Michigan Tech looked to bounce back in the second half and created some chances to tie or take the lead. Sgambati had a shot blocked in the box in the 64th minute and then a rebound shot off the previous block was deflected away from the net by a Davenport defender five seconds later.
In the 79th minute, DeMario forced DeWyse make a save and then in the 83rd minute a shot by senior Rachel Wall nearly tied the contest, if not for another save by DeWyse. The Huskies kept fighting to the end and kept pushing for scoring chances all the way to the final horn. Wall blasted a shot towards the goal in the 87th minute that DeWyse was able to get a hand on and then in the final seconds, Davenport's defense blocked a strike by sophomore Jesse Jacobusse in the box in front of the net. Unfortunately, that would prove to be the final chance for the Huskies.
Sgambati paced the Huskies' offense with four shots and had the lone goal on the afternoon. Shaw followed with three shot attempts and provided the assist on Sgambati's goal in the 39th minute. The Huskies had the advantage in total shots at 15-10 while the Panthers had a slight edge in corner kicks at 5-4. Goalie Amanda Young made three saves and played all 90 minutes in front of the net for the Huskies.
Hilgendorf had a team high four shots and one of the two goals for Davenport in Sunday's match while Bennett took two shots and placed one of them in the back of the net. DeWyse made four saves in 90 minutes and in addition the Panthers' defense was credited with a save for a total of five.
The Huskies return home for Hall of Fame Weekend on Friday to host Purdue Northwest in a GLIAC match a Sherman Field followed by a showdown with Parkside on Sunday. Tech topped Purdue Northwest 3-0 and Parkside 1-0 on the road in non-conference contests earlier this season.
Friday's kickoff is scheduled for 5 p.m. with a 12 p.m. start time slated for Sunday.