At opening Warrior Classic, they outscore two opponents by 10-2
MANSFIELD, Conn. - Forwards Nicole Leonard (Rutherford, NJ) and Daniela Marchitto (Orange) scored three minutes apart midway through the first half and the Eastern Connecticut State University women's soccer team rolled to a 6-1 win over Saint Joseph College (CT) for its second win in two days Saturday night at its own Warrior Classic at the Mansfield Outdoor Complex.
At right: Tamar Merheb (right) celebrates her first goal with Megan Godwin. (Cristina Danielson photo)
Ranked No. 14 nationally in the pre-season, Eastern (3-0) stretched its unbeaten regular-season streak to 21, dating back to the final regular-season match of 2009.
In the first meeting between the programs, Eastern outshot Saint Joseph (1-1) by nearly 2-to-1 and limited its opponent to just one corner kick for the second straight game.
Seven different players contributed to the scoring for Eastern, with Marchitto scoring twice and assisting once and Leonard scoring once and assisting once. Sisters Tamar and Jo-Ann Merheb (Bethel) each contributed a goal and freshman Rachael Skinner (Uncasville) recorded her first career point when she set up Jo-Ann Merheb's goal in the 69th minute with a give-and-go.
In two tournament wins, Eastern outscored its opponents 10-2 and more than doubled their shot total. Marchitto had three goals and two assists, Leonard two goals and an assist and Jo-ann Merheb two goals. Junior keeper Mackenzie MacLeod (Northfield) played all 180 minutes in net to improve to 5-0-1 in her career. She made eight saves, all coming against Saint Joseph.
Coming off Friday's 1-0 overtime win over Manhattanville College, Saint Joseph scored its goal in the 58th minute on Nicole Mendelson's free kick which hit the cross bar and settled over the goal line.
This year marked the return of the Warrior Classic, which had run between 1987 (the second year of the program) through 1989. In those three years, the Warriors won five of six matches (all by shutout) and two titles.