October 27, 2007

Early Offense Helps MIT Top Smith, 2-0

Oct. 27, 2007

Box Score

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. - MIT advanced to the semifinals of the NEWMAC Women's Soccer Tournament after topping Smith College, 2-0, on rain-soaked field at Steinbrenner Stadium. The Engineers scored both of their goals in the first five minutes of the opening half to advance past the opening round for the first time since 2002.

Senior Amy Ludlum set up both of Saturday's finishes with great touch on two counter-attacks. Senior midfielder Janine Hopmans lit the board for MIT (12-5-0) in the third minute after taking a pass by Ludlum to the left side of the net where she sent a ground shot past a pursuing defender as well as Smith keeper Lauren Bachtel. The shot from eight-yards out resulted in Hopmans' seventh goal of the campaign.

Less than two minutes later, the Cardinal and Gray upped its lead to two off the foot of sophomore forward Liz Theurer. Ludlum served a beautiful ball to Theurer, who split two defenders en route to her 11th score of the season, although Theurer ignited the opportunity with a through ball to Ludlum at midfield.

Smith (5-10-1) had several goal-line chances in the tilt, including a terrific look by Krista Mataat in the 70th minute, but senior Mary Harding stopped every chance after showing a sensational command of the box. Harding, who was playing her first match in goal in over two years, dove to the ground to negate several serious threats. The senior, who was also playing in her second match since suffering a career-threatening injury early in the year, ended the afternoon with eight saves. Bachtel stopped two shots for Smith, which out-shot MIT, 10-6.

With the victory, the Engineers advanced to the semifinals of the NEWMAC Tournament for the first time since making their lone run to the conference final in 2002, while tying for the second-highest single-season win total in team history. It also improved MIT's home record in 2007 to 8-1-0. 

Ludlum's two assists gave her 51 points and set a new Institute record for points in a season in the history of the men's and women's programs.