AMHERST, Mass. – Senior Ashlyn Heller struck once in each half to lead the No. 19 Amherst women's soccer team past Mount Holyoke College, 2-0 in its 2016 season opener Tuesday evening under the lights on Gooding Field. With the victory, the Purple & White move to 1-0-0 on the year, while the Lyons fall to 1-2-0 overall.
Heller would net Amherst's first goal of the year 31:58 into the young season, collecting a corner kick from Delancey King just inside the box and volleying a shot past the Lyon goalkeeper and into the top corner of the net.
Retaining the one goal edge heading into the second half, the Purple & White doubled their lead at the 54:20 mark as Heller found the ball at her feet in a scrum in front of the goal and beat a defender before once again sending the ball into the netting.
Amherst outshot Mount Holyoke 22-3 and held a 7-2 advantage in corner kicks in the matchup, while sophomore Chelsea Cutler (1-0-0) recorded three saves en-route to earning the win in goal. Lyon goalie Zoe Marshall (1-2-0) made 10 saves for Mount Holyoke.
Controlling pace of play from the opening horn, Amherst first threatened 10 minutes into the first half as Hannah Guzzi showed impressive patience with a well-timed run to net, however her shot soared just over the crossbar. Keeping the pressure on the Lyons, Rubii Tamen headed a perfectly placed corner kick from King over the bar at the 21:16 mark.
Mount Holyoke strung together its first attack on the Amherst goal a minute later as McKenna Lamb nearly corralled a free kick and earned a breakaway, however Tamen was able to redirect the ball just enough to allow Amherst to regain its defensive positioning.
Lamb would test the Purple & White once again at the 30:30 mark, forcing Cutler to come out of her net and make an impressive save to keep the game deadlocked at 0-0.
Mount Holyoke returns to action on Saturday when it hosts Wesleyan University at 12pm.
Photo courtesy of RJB Sports Photography.