READING, Pa. – Junior Niamh Healy (Orangeburg, N.Y./Tappan Zee) scored the game-winner in the 85th minute and The University of Scranton women's soccer team (13-2-1) extended its unbeaten streak to seven matches with a 2-1 victory over Penn State Berks (10-5-2) in a non-conference match on Wednesday night in Reading.
Healy headed home the game-winner following a beauty of free kick by senior Teresa Hegarty (Bryn Mawr, Pa./Merion Mercy Academy). The goal was Healy's team-leading ninth of the season and her sixth game-winner.
In the first 10 minutes of the match, fellow junior Claire Mulholland (Marlton, N.J./Cherokee) and Healy both sent shots just high of the net that nearly gave the Royals an early advantage. The Nittany Lions grabbed the first goal of the game in the 18th minute as Emily Clapper scored on a long shot that found its way into the far corner of the net. From there, Scranton put the pressure on offensively and Penn State Berks goalie Sophia Gonzalez denied Hegarty's shot in the 26th minute before graduate student Stephanie Lowrey (Bridgewater, N.J./Bridgewater-Raritan) found the equalizer in the 30th minute as she tapped one home following a scrum in front of the goal. Both teams traded opportunities in the final five plus minutes of the half and each goalie made a save to keep things even at one apiece for the time being.
The goal was Lowrey's first of the season and the 13th of her career as a Royal.
Following an early corner kick opportunity for Penn State Berks in the 50th minute, Gonzalez recorded a pair of saves on the other end as the match stayed deadlocked at one. The Royals continued to search for a game-winner in the final 20 plus minutes of regulation and Healy struck with the afore-mentioned go-ahead goal in the 85th minute.
Scranton played impressive defense throughout the night as they held a 14-2 advantage in shots and held the Nittany Lions without a shot over the final 45 minutes. Sophomore goalie Nicole Olson (Stoughton, Mass./Ursuline Academy) tallied one save to record the win for the Royals, while Gonzalez made five saves for the hosts in the setback.
The Royals return home to host Juniata in the regular season finale on Saturday afternoon at Weiss Field with action getting underway at 4 p.m.