The James Madison women’s soccer team dropped a 2-0 decision Sunday afternoon on the road against Northeastern at Parsons Field. The loss is the first of Colonial Athletic Association play in 2014, dropping JMU to 2-1 in conference action and 7-6 overall.
“We ran into a hot and confident Northeastern team in this one,” JMU head coach Dave Lombardo said. “They are strong, quick and talented and played a great game. We’re happy to end a long stretch of travel now after playing seven of our last eight on the road and we’re looking forward to having four of the next six at home starting Friday against College of Charleston.”
Northeastern (9-3-2 overall, 4-0 CAA) kept JMU off the scoreboard for just the fourth time this year while recording its NCAA-leading 11th shutout of the 2014 season.
The Huskies put the Dukes on their heels early with a goal in the eighth minute off the foot of Lahaina Zoller. The goal, set up by Carly Wilhelm, came on a through ball to to Zoller and her shot to the right side beat redshirt-junior goalkeeper Ellen Forrest (Midlothian, Va./James River) for her third goal of the year. The goal was her second game-winning goal against JMU, the first coming in the 2013 CAA Championship finals at University Park last November, a 3-1 win for the Huskies.
Northeastern doubled its lead in the 57th minute when JMU was called for a foul in the penalty area, awarding the Huskies a free kick. Mackenzie Dowd, the reigning CAA and TopDrawerSoccer.com Player of the Week, stepped up to take the free kick and put her shot past Forrest. Dowd has now scored in each of Northeastern’s CAA games this season.
Forrest made five save in the contest while Northeastern goalkeeper Paige Burnett tallied three saves on the way to her 11th clean sheet of the season.
Three of the five JMU shots came from redshirt-freshman midfielder Allison Bortell (Midlothian, Va./James River). Overall, Northeastern outshot the Dukes 15-5. JMU could only get one shot off in the second half. The Huskies have not allowed a second-half goal in 14 matches this season.
After playing its last five matches on the road, JMU comes home Friday, Oct. 10, for a 7 p.m. match against College of Charleston. Four of the Dukes’ final six matches of the regular season come at home at University Park.