BRIDGEWATER, Mass. – Senior forward Courtney Pepin (Uxbridge, Mass.) tallied a pair of goals to lead the Bridgewater State University women's soccer team to a 2-0 Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference (MASCAC) victory over visiting Fitchburg State University on Saturday evening at Swenson Field.
The Bears, who were playing without their top two scorers, improve to 6-4 on the season and remain unbeaten in MASCAC play with a 3-0 conference mark. The Falcons fall to 3-7 overall and 1-2 in the MASCAC.
Senior goalkeeper Lauren DeSousa (Taunton, Mass.) made two saves to record her sixth win of the season and fourth shutout. DeSousa now has 21 ½ shutouts in three seasons at Bridgewater State as she equaled the Bears' all-time shutout mark originally set by BSU Hall of Famer Tracey Ullathorne in 1995.
Pepin broke a scoreless tie in the 70th minute as she score off the rebound of a shot from sophomore defender Kaitlyn Bongarzone (Mansfield, Mass.). Bongarzone's blast from 23 yards out deflected off the outstretched hand of the Fitchburg netminder and then hit the crossbar. Pepin outfought a defender to the rebounder and slipped a shot inside the left post.
Just 81 seconds later, Pepin found the back of the net with a header goal off a restart with Bongarzone picking up her second assist of the evening and team-leading sixth of the season. Bongarzone lofted a long volley into the box and Pepin headed the ball past the diving keeper for her fifth goal of the 2017 campaign.
Sophomore midfielder Emma Sanders (Seekonk, Mass.) capped off the scoring in the 82nd minute as she deposited a shot into a wide open net. A sliding Fitchburg netminder came out of the net to play a thru-ball, with Sanders converging on the play, but was unable to corral the ball. Sanders jumped on the loose ball and easily tapped it into the unguarded net for her third goal of the season.
The Bears held a decided 26-5 shot advantage as well as a 9-1 edge in corner kick attempts.
Freshman Sarah Hemmings (Eastham, Mass.) made six saves between the pipes for the Falcons in the setback. Hemmings robbed BSU junior defender Kassidy Campbell (Norton, Mass.) with a leaping save in the 59th minute with the game still scoreless. Campbell drilled a shot from 43 yard out that was labeled for under the crossbar.
The Bears travel to Roger Williams University on Wednesday night for a seven o'clock game with the Hawks. The Falcons head to Clark University on Thursday evening to take on the Cougars at seven.