QUEENS, N.Y. – Despite a season-high six saves by Mattie Gallagher (Jr., Gilbertsville, Pa.), the Navy women’s soccer team (2-2-2) dropped a 2-0 decision to St. John’s (2-1-2) on Friday night at Belson Stadium in Queens, N.Y.

“St. John’s is a really solid team, they came out with passionate play and were the better team tonight,” remarked head coach Carin Gabarra. “They played better soccer and had more chances. We have to improve our offensive attack, we’re not going to win many games taking five total shots and putting just two on goal. We’re a resilient team so I know we’ll work hard to clean up what wasn’t working tonight and be ready to go on Sunday.” 

Credit: Sophia Price / Virginia Tech

Gallagher finished the game with a season-high six saves. After giving up a goal in the 16th minute, she thwarted the next five shots on goal by the Red Storm. St. John’s converted a penalty kick that was just out of Gallagher’s reach in the 74th minute. The junior later kept the score 2-0 with a diving stop for her sixth save of the evening.

Offensively, the Midshipmen recorded five shots with a pair of shots on goal, while attempting three corner kicks. Isabella Romano (Fr., Syosset, N.Y.) led the way with two shots, including a shot on goal, while Chloe Dawson (Jr., Fairfax, Va.) notched a shot on goal. Caitlin Doran (Sr., Queens, N.Y.) and Tatum Kelly (So., Pinehurst, N.C.) rounded out the shot attempts with one apiece.

The Midshipmen had a scoring opportunity early in the first 10 minutes but were unable to convert. Dawson ended a run into the offensive third with a shot that was knocked away by Red Storm goalkeeper Gina Muzzi. On the ensuing corner kick, Doran headed the ball towards the goal but pushed the ball high and to the left.

St. John’s scratched the scoreboard first, finding the back of the net in the 16th minute. The home team was able to work the ball into the attacking third and Melina Couzis made Navy pay with a low shot into the corner of the goal.

The Midshipmen’s defense kept the Red Storm out of the net the rest of the half, sending the game into intermission with St. John’s up 1-0. After surrendering a goal on St. John’s first shot attempt, Gallagher turned away the Red Storm’s next three shot attempts.

In the second half, St. John’s converted a penalty kick to increase the advantage to 2-0. Navy was whistled for a foul inside the box to set up the PK. Gallagher guessed correctly in her save attempt, but Michelle Money’s shot was true, giving the hosts a two-goal advantage in the 74th minute.

The Mids had an opportunity in the 88th minute as Romano turned and powered a ball towards the top left corner, but the Red Storm goalie was able to push the ball out of play.

For the game, St. John’s outshot Navy, 11-5 with an 8-2 advantage in shots on goal.

Navy returns to action with a Sunday matinee in Teaneck, New Jersey against Fairleigh Dickinson (0-5). The first touch between the Mids and Knights is set for 12:00 p.m. at University Stadium. Navy-FDU will be hosted online by the NEC Front Row network and live stats will be provided.

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