On Saturday, Sept. 17, the Tufts women’s soccer team hit the Massachusetts Turnpike to take on our beloved Mammoths. Historically, the herbivorous creatures did not coexist, but the two have been tough competition for each other on the pitch, going 5-5 over their last 10 matchups — however, the Mammoths have not beaten the Jumbos at home since 2011.
Starting with the first whistle, Amherst women’s soccer dominated the run of play. Junior Abby Schwartz ’24, with 10 shots already under her Under Armour belt this season, got a quick header off in the third minute of the game that went just wide. (Managing Sports Editor) Liza Katz ’24 joined in on the party a few minutes later, sending the ball soaring just above the crossbar. And, in the 26th minute, senior Isabel Stern ’23 got her foot around the ball as well, sending a rocket of a shot straight into the box, forcing Tufts keeper Hayley Bernstein off her line to make the save. Unfortunately, in retaliation, the Tufts attacking line managed to slip behind the Amherst defense and whip one past keeper Mika Fisher ’24 — despite not holding much of the ball before that point — and ended the half with a 1-0 lead.
True to their Amherst ways, the Mammoths refused to give up or give in, outshooting Tufts 10-6 in the second half. Carter Hollingsworth ’25, Alexa Juarez ’23E, and Ella Johnson ’26 all took shots in the first 20 minutes, but they could not find the back of the net. Amherst kept the pressure high until the very end, with Fiona Bernet ’25, Stern, Alyssa Huynh ’25, and Charlotte Huang ’25 all upping their shooting statistics as well. Despite Amherst’s dangerous attacks and valiant effort, sending much of their team forward on every attacking opportunity, Tufts took advantage of Amherst’s risk-taking and found the back of the net with five minutes to go — the game ended soon after with the Jumbos having notched two goals to Amherst’s zero.
While disappointed with the end product on Saturday, Huang told The Student, “[Despite the loss], we know we’re the stronger team and we look forward to beating them in this year’s postseason.”
The Mammoths returned to the field on Tuesday, Sept. 20, taking their turn traveling the Massachusetts Turnpike to take on Emerson College on the road in Boston. They dominated in all facets of the game, jumping out to a 4-0 lead before halftime with goals from Stern, Schwartz, Ally Deegan ’24, and Charlotte McGuire ’25 (the first of her collegiate career). The lead remained at four until the final whistle despite chance after chance for the Mammoths. Isabelle Geneve ’23 sent a point-blank header just over the crossbar, and high pressure from Katz led to another goal from Stern that was eventually disallowed due to a foul on the play. However, the Amherst defense held firm despite the scoring lull, and the Mammoths added their fourth tally in the win column. They finished with a total of 20 shots to Emerson’s measly seven.
With a record of 4-1, the Mammoths will take the long trip to Maine to play Bates on Saturday, Sept. 24, and Colby on Sunday, Sept. 25. Both games are scheduled to kick off at 11 a.m.