EDWARDSVILLE — Allysiah Belt’s late-match goal lifted the Edwardsville Tigers to a 2-1 victory over the Marquette Catholic Explorers in Wednesday night’s non-conference contest at the District 7 Sports Complex in Edwardsville.
Belt scored with just 1:32 left to play in the match.
“I looked at the clock and there was a minute and a half left,” Belt said. “Then I was like ‘I just scored a goal, we have to hold them.’ I’m really glad that it went in. I’m sure excited that I got the goal.”
The contest was played on both sides of the field in the first half and both teams displayed a considerable amount of ball control. Edwardsville put up three shots on goal in the first 20-minutes while Marquette had one. The Tigers put three more shots on goal in the final 20-minutes of the half, as it remained scoreless at halftime.
“We possessed the ball really, really well in that first half,” Edwardsville coach Abby Comerford said. “We were playing our game and that’s what we wanted to play. We had the ball on the ground and were winning that. We were moving the ball really, really well.”
A little over a minute into the second half, Abigail Crabtree scored a goal to give the Tigers a 1-0 lead. Crabtree fired off a shot approximately 10-yards out from the east side of the goal, as the ball flew in the west side of the goal.
Edwardsville (7-2-1) continued to control the flow of play for the next several minutes. The Tigers placed five shots on goal between Crabtree’s goal and the 7:33 mark.
“This just shows the girls how important it is to put the ball in the back of the net,” Comerford said. “We had so many chances throughout the game.”
The Explorers (4-5-1) worked the ball to Edwardsville’s side of the field with 7 minutes left to play in the contest and Annabelle Copeland netted a goal to tie to contest at 1-1. Copeland fired off a missile shot from approximately 25-yards from the goal. Her shot started from the west side of the goal and the ball went into the east side of the goal.
“Playing a team like that, they’re just phenomenal in every position,” Marquette coach Steve Mitchell said. “They’re fast, they get a good touch on the ball. I thought we played the first 40 minutes really well. In the second half, we came out flat. But we battled and battled, that was a laser she (Copeland) hit from 25-yards out.”
Mitchell also praised goalkeeper Lauren Fischer’s performance, seeing it kept his team in the game. Fischer finished with 11 saves. The Explorers return to action at 4:30 p.m. Thursday against local rival Roxana at Gordon Moore Park. The Tigers will play next at 2:30 p.m. on Saturday against Normal at home.