By: Desmond Boyle, Staff Writer
The Tigers lost two double overtime games this weekend to Hofstra and Northeastern.
On Friday, Towson took on Hofstra in a rematch of last year’s CAA playoffs in which the Tigers were eliminated as the Pride won 3-0. This game, the Pride dominated possession early on as Towson struggled to handle Hofstra’s high tempo and suffocating pressure.
Hofstra was rewarded for its aggressive play after about 20 minutes following incisive passing that tore apart the Tiger defense. Midfielder Kristen Desmond crossed the ball from right to left and found forward Jenn Buoncore all alone as the ball was lifted over Towson’s defense and goalie.
Buoncore then shot the ball with pace into an open net.
The Tigers struggled early on, but as halftime passed and the game progressed, the Tigers worked harder and began to create chances on long balls over the top of the Hofstra defense.
Towson finally put the ball into the back of the net after junior midfielder Emily Marshall sent a high arced cross over several Pride defenders before sophomore Maddie Bove latched her foot onto the cross and tapped the ball into the back of the net.
Hofstra ended Towson’s hopes of completing the comeback in the second overtime. Pride forward Jill Mulholland dribbled her way around one Towson defender before lashing her shot into the bottom left corner of the net.
Towson was forced into a comeback situation once again against Northeastern on Sunday.
Northeastern scored a bizarre opener after the referee ruled that Northeastern had scored despite it appearing as though Towson’s junior goalie Taylor Sebolao had kept the ball from crossing the line.
The Huskies then scored with five minutes left in the half from a corner kick. Breeana Koemans sent in a high cross to the back post and found an unmarked Mackenzie Dowd who headed the ball into the back of the net.
Towson struggled to retain possession for most of the game before making dramatic adjustments with 20 minutes to go. The Tigers played with only three defenders and pushed forward in search of goals.
Junior winger Natalia Pinkney delivered twice for the Tigers as she first received a through ball past the Husky defense from Freshman Alexis Toles before placing the ball in the bottom corner of the net. Then, with just three minutes to play, senior defender Vasthy Delgado sent a booming free kick into the box that bounced around before Pinkney found a way to get to the ball and blast a shot into the net.
Towson then suffered the same fate as Friday when a defensive mix up led to an easy goal for attacker Hannah Lopiccolo.
“We’ve been playing great soccer, we just have to get that key finishing component and sometimes the luck just isn’t on our side.” Pinkney said. “We just have to keep playing how we’re playing and keep our heads in it, keep our spirits up.”
Towson showed great heart in two emotional contests and head coach Greg Paynter was happy with the fight of the Tigers.
“To take Hofstra and Northeastern to double overtime this weekend is an unbelievable accomplishment,” Head Coach Greg Paynter said. “And I told the team today I couldn’t be more proud of what they did.”
The Tigers next game is on Friday, as Towson takes on the College of Charleston at 7 p.m., away.