SCRANTON, Pa. – Junior Niamh Healy (Orangeburg, N.Y./Tappan Zee) opened the scoring just under three minutes into the game and The University of Scranton women's soccer (17-2-2) never looked back en route to a 3-0 victory over the Westfield State Owls (16-4-1) in NCAA Tournament Second Round action on Sunday afternoon at Weiss Field in Scranton.
With the win, the Royals are headed back to the Sweet 16 for a second straight year and have advanced past the second round for the fourth time in program history.
Scranton will take on the winner of Misericordia/Western New England at a place and time yet to be determined next weekend.
In the third minute, senior Teresa Hegarty (Bryn Mawr, Pa./Merion Mercy Academy) played a ball down the wing to Healy who sent a shot over the head of Owls' goalie Lauryn Davis for her team-leading 11th goal of the season and the early 1-0 lead. Davis was forced to make a save on a shot from sophomore Emily Bannon (Middletown, N.Y./Minisink Valley) just over a minute later as the Royals continued to put the pressure on offensively. With just under 10 minutes to play in the first half, sophomore Samantha Goffice (Gilbertsville, Pa./Boyertown Area) slotted a shot past a diving Davis to give Scranton a 2-0 edge with her third goal of the year.
Head coach Colleen Pivirotto's team held a 10-3 shot advantage through the opening 45 minutes and took the 2-0 lead into the locker room.
Royals' sophomore goalie Nicole Olson (Stoughton, Mass./Ursuline Academy) made a save on Westfield State's Kylee Murphy in the 62nd minute to keep it a two goal game. Then, in the 66th minute, junior Mary Haggerty (Garden City, N.Y./Garden City) delivered a beauty of a free kick into the box and Hegarty headed it home for the 3-0 lead.
The goal was Hegarty's fourth of the season and she also leads the team with eight assists.
Scranton managed a series of quality chances over the final 20 plus minutes and senior Evelyn Bruggeman's (Coatesville, Pa./Bishop Shanahan) nearly made it 4-0 when her shot hit the post in the 78th minute. Olson added one more save in the 85th minute to preserve the shutout victory.
On the day, the Royals held a 25-8 advantage in shots led by seven from Healy.
Olson made two saves to post her 11th shutout of the season, while Davis tallied three saves in 62 plus minutes of action for the Owls.
More information on next weekend's Sweet 16 matchup will be posted at athletics.scranton.edu in the coming days.