BOSTON, Mass.--Krista Ledin (Bridgewater, Mass.) scored with 10 minutes remaining and UMass Boston's (13-1, 5-0 Little East Conference) defense stymied Eastern Connecticut State University (6-6-1, 4-1 LEC) enough to help the Beacons earn a 1-0 victory Saturday afternoon at the Clark Athletic Center.
The win not only puts UMass Boston in sole possesion of first place in the Little East Conference, for the first time ever this late in the season, but is the Beacons first ever regular season victory over Eastern Connecticut in 18 tries. To top it all off, Amy Zombeck's squad set a new program-record for Little East Conference victories in a single-season with five.
Saturday's contest also marked the Beacons "Pink Game" as UMass Boston sported pink warmups and the team gave out pamphlets and raised awareness for breast cancer awareness.
After a scoreless first 78 minutes, the Beacons put together a perfect stretch of passes to score the lone goal of the game. UMass Boston pushed the ball up the near-side of the field, before Tayla Andrews (Plymouth, Mass.) and Ledin worked a give-and-go. Andrews found Ledin just inside the box, and Ledin's right-footed shot bounced off the foot of Warriors keeper Mackenzie MacLeod and into the back of the net at the 79:52 mark. The goal was Ledin's league-leading 16th of the season.
While the Beacons offensive sputtered and struggled to get good chances through the first 60 minutes, the defense had one of their complete contests of the year. Wave after wave of Warriors forwards were denied by the Beacons combination of Alli Modzelewski (Newtown, Conn.) and Caitlin Coleman (Willimantic, Conn.) in the middle of the back line, and Brittany Castillo (Yarmouth, Mass.) and Anna O'Donoghue (Swansea, Mass.) on the outside. The Beacons defense allowed just six shots all afternoon, to an Eastern Connecticut team that had averaged over three goals a game against conference foes.
In net, Kristen Spain (Quincy, Mass.) continued to perform at a high level, with her sixth shutout of the season. Spain made five stops on five shots, including a huge early stop on Maggie Sayers from 10 yards out.
The Warriors dominated the first 20 minutes of play as UMass Boston looked tentative and nervous in the matchup of first-place teams. Sayers managed two shots within the first five minutes on goal, but things would go downhill from their for the Eastern Connecticut offense. UMass Boston got their best look of the half in the final 10 seconds of the half, when MacLeod robbed Ledin on a shot to the far post, that MacLeod just barely got a hand on.
Overall, the Beacons controlled the shot totals 11-3 in the first half and recorded all four corner kicks in the stanza.
UMass Boston slowly gained momentum in the second half, as they dominated the play over the final 30 minutes of the contest. The Beacons outshot the Warriors 7-2 over the final 30 mintues and scored the lone goal of the contest.
The Beacons will finish off their three-game homestand on Monday when they host Salve Regina University at 3:30 p.m.