Laura Kurash '13 (#8, left side photo by Peter Stein '84) scored the only goal in Wesleyan’s 1-0 victory over visiting NESCAC rival Tufts Sat., Sept.15, marking Wesleyan’s first victory in the series since another 1-0 home victory in 2005. It was the 29th goal and 13th game-winner of Kurash’s Wesleyan career. Kurash’s goal came in the 42nd minute after a scoreless first half as she won a hotly contested ball close to the Tufts net after a corner kick and pushed it home.
Although Tufts attempted to rally, outshooting the Cardinals, 8-5, during the second half, goalkeeper Jess Tollman '15 (#30, right side photo) made several saves to preserve the Cardinals’ victory. Tollman had eight saves in the game, posting her first shutout of the season and the fourth of her career. She has now gone 195:10 over a three-game span without yielding a goal, dropping her goals-against average to 0.40 with a .952 save percentage. Wesleyan outshot Tufts, 6-4, in the opening 45 minutes, making the final shot differential a relatively even 12-11 in favor of Tufts.
Wesleyan was right back in action Sun., Sept. 16 against undefeated Hamilton. In just the second all-time meeting of the NESCAC rivals, Hamilton captured a 1-0 win as the visitors scored with just :26 left in the first overtime to make an instant winner of Continentals. Last year in Clinton, N.Y., Hamilton was a 3-1 victor over Wesleyan. Hamilton sits atop the NESCAC standings with a 3-0 conference mark.
The teams battled throughout the afternoon with Hamilton generating a 16-9 edge in shots. Wesleyan keeper Jessica Tollman '14 made six stops in extending her scoreless streak over a four-game stretch to 294:44 before Hamilton snapped the streak. The game-winning goal came after the second of two corner kicks for Hamilton in the closing moments of the first overtime period. Wesleyan had averted disaster after the first corner kick when Kaylin Berger '13, a defender, stopped a would-be game-winning shot aimed just inside the left post. The ball went off her body out of bounds, bringing about the second corner kick. That resulted in a ball right in front of the Wesleyan net. The ball caromed between several players for both teams, and eventually was nudged into the Cardinal net by a Continental's body.
The Hamilton goalie posted four saves on the afternoon and made a game-saving diving stop of a shot destined for the right side of the goal off the foot of Cardinal Isabel Clements '16 with 28 minutes left in the second half.
Wesleyan plays again Wed., Sept. 19 when it hosts Salve Regina for a non-league contest. The game will be webcast and can be viewed starting at 4:30 pm by clicking < here >.