On Saturday, Oct. 16, women’s soccer headed to Boston to face off against Tufts University. The excitement from both teams could be felt from the starting whistle but Carter Hollingsworth’s ’25 header that skimmed the crossbar really got the ball rolling, so to speak. Natalie Landau’s ’22 breakaway in the tenth minute led to a shot saved by Tufts’ Kaelin Logue. The Mammoths’ offense was unrelenting: Alexa Juarez’s ’23E shot in the nineteenth minute swung wide of the post and Landau struck again with a powerful shot that sailed just left of the goal a few minutes later. The opposing attack’s attempt to put one on the board for Tufts was denied by the incomparable Mika Fisher ’24 in the twenty-ninth minute. The Mammoths and the Jumbos continued to battle intensely until the halfway whistle, ending the scoreless first half with several fouls from each side.
Both teams resumed play with renewed energy, but it was Tufts’ Liz Reed who put one in the back of the net with a header in the fifty-third minute. Amherst kept fighting, however, with Landau testing the Tufts back line once again with a shot just four minutes later. Just over an hour in, Landau broke through the defense yet again; her shot rebounded to Patience Kum ’25, who sent the ball flying past the keeper. Playing in all 13 games of the season so far, Kum has already scored 10 goals, broken even more ankles, and doesn’t appear to be slowing down anytime soon.
With the score tied up, the tension between purple and blue continued to rise. Julia Ralph ’22 almost put another one in with her shot in minute 73, and Hollingsworth sent another sailing over the crossbar several minutes later. Amherst’s back line proved to be a cohesive unit once again, limiting Tufts’ offense to a single shot in the rest of the half. Claire Nam ’22 wrapped up the excitement of regulation time with a shot just under the 90-minute mark, saved once again by Logue.
Only three minutes into overtime, Juarez ended the game with a beautiful goal off her penalty kick, her fourth of the season so far. The Mammoths returned to Amherst with another win and a conference record of 6-1-1.
On Sunday, Oct. 17, the Mammoths squared off against New England College on Hitchcock Field. The team dominated possession and kept the Pilgrims working hard with their seven corner kicks in the first 30 minutes. Landau started off the game strong with a shot less than a minute after the whistle that went just wide of the goal; Ralph and Ruby Hastie ’22 fired off two more in quick succession. In just 20 minutes, Juarez, Hastie, Sophia Fikke ’22, Hollingsworth, Landau, Liza Katz ’24 and Abby Schwartz ’24 all tested the keeper with their shots. Isabel Stern ’23 had a powerful strike that rang off the crossbar but it was ultimately Schwartz who put the first one in the net for purple in the thirty-fourth minute.
The second half started with the Mammoths leading 1-0, and the team continued to command the field. Cassie Chin ’22 had her first shot of the game in the fifty-first minute, saved by New England’s keeper, Emily Sashko, and Fiona Bernet ’25 followed up with a shot in minute 56. Izzy Geneve ’23, Charlotte Huang ’25, Alyssa Hyunh ’25 and Cassidy Duncan ’25 all had shots of their own, as well. In minute 74, Kum received a pass from Schwartz that allowed her to record her second goal of the weekend. Amherst’s attacking line kept testing the defense, including two rapid-fire shots from Sarah Vierling ’23, until Nam managed to break through in the last minutes of the game to bring the score to 3-0 for the Mammoths. This victory wrapped up an exciting weekend for women’s soccer.
Currently holding the No. 3 spot in the NESCAC, women’s soccer is in a good position to make it to the championships this year. Roll Hitchcock Field next Saturday, Oct. 23, to see your favorite soccer team take on Colby in the second-to-last game of the regular season.