Lady Lions Grab 4-1 Victory Over Juniata

Photo (by Noah Riffe): Sadie McConnell sends a shot past the Juniata goalkeeper during the second half of Wednesday night's game at Spring Run Stadium.
Photo (by Noah Riffe): Sadie McConnell sends a shot past the Juniata goalkeeper during the second half of Wednesday night's game at Spring Run Stadium.

ALTOONA, Pa. – Sadie McConnell (New Enterprise, PA/Northern Bedford) scored two goals and Sydney Emershaw (Dallas, PA/Dallas) made nine saves to help lead the Penn State Altoona women's soccer team to a 4-1 win over non-conference opponent Juniata College on Wednesday night at Spring Run Stadium.

McConnell upped her season goal total to a team-high four with her scoring output. Meanwhile, Haley Giedroc (Howard, PA/Bald Eagle) scored her first career goal for Penn State Altoona (3-2-1).

Emershaw improved her season record to 2-1-1 with the victory, making a season-high nine saves between the pipes.

Penn State Altoona took an early lead on an own goal by Juniata (2-4), when a defender on the visiting team inadvertently headed a Lady Lions' corner kick into her own net at 5:07.

The home team doubled its lead less than five minutes later. Kierra Irwin's (Altoona, PA/Altoona) well-placed ball down the middle of the field led McConnell toward the box, and McConnell took the pass and beat the keeper with a shot at 9:52 to make it 2-0.

Emershaw helped to keep Juniata off the scoreboard in the first half, making five of her nine saves in the period.

However, Juniata cut its deficit in half shortly after the intermission. Kristin Racis sent a free kick from the left side of the field into the box, and it was tapped into the goal by Amanda Kopacz at 47:56 to bring the Eagles to within one, 2-1.

But Penn State Altoona answered soon thereafter. Giedroc pulled the trigger on a long shot from around 40 yards out, floating it overtop the leaping Juniata goalkeeper and into the goal at 53:10 to put the Lady Lions back up by two, 3-1.

McConnell added an insurance goal for Penn State Altoona at 67:45, when the ball deflected sharply upfield and was taken by McConnell, who outraced the defender and sent a shot into the bottom right corner of the net to increase her team's lead to 4-1.

Despite the win, Penn State Altoona was outshot 21-10 by Juniata, including the Eagles holding a 10-6 edge in shots on goal. Juniata also recorded nine corner kicks to the Lady Lions' three.

McConnell led Penn State Altoona in shots, recording game-highs with three shots on goal and five total shots attempted. Giedroc had two shots, including one on goal.

Next up for the Lady Lions is the team's first Allegheny Mountain Collegiate Conference opener, as Penn State Altoona hits the road for Buffalo, N.Y. to take on conference opponent D'Youville College this Saturday, September 22 at 2:00 p.m.