Dawgs take down Belmont 1-0

By Tamar Mosby, Sports Reporter

Tonight Southern took the field against the Belmont University Bruins in the first of their final two  games left on the homestand.

The Salukis defeated the Bruins 1-0. 

“I think it gives our kids confidence in their ability to get results,” Saluki head coach Grant Williams said. “I think this win makes them hungrier for the next chance to prove themselves. I feel that wins keep them working hard and engaged.”

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SIU entered the game on a 1-0 win from their matchup against Rose-Hulman University, while the Bruins entered on a two-game losing streak with their last loss coming from Chattanooga.

The first shot of the game came from Saluki freshman forward Liz Brechtel, but the ball was off target and missed the goal going over the top.

Within minutes, Brechtel was at the goal again passing her defender and taking another shot, but this too missed just over the top of the goal.

The Bruins notched their first shot of the game near the 30 minute mark, but the shot was blocked by Saluki freshman goalkeeper Dariana Mihalache.

For the next several minutes of the half, SIU was unable to keep the ball on their offensive end as the Belmont defense held them to one side of the field.

With three minutes on the clock, the Bruins came down the field with attempts to score, but Mihalache was ready and intercepted the shot.

Before the half ended Belmont attempted another shot, but it was again intercepted by the Saluki defense.

The first half ended with neither team able to put a goal on the board.

At the beginning of the second half each team was attacking the net, but neither were able to score a goal. With each aggressive offensive attack came an aggressive defender to counteract it.

Mihalache kept the goal safe for Southern intercepting a very close shot at the 30 minute mark to keep Belmont off of the board.

“Goalkeeping was one of the things I was worried about coming into this job,” Williams said. “Dariana has just established herself out of our group as the one who was post prepared to be in goal for us. I think it’s obvious to see why she was attractive to us as a goalkeeper position without a doubt.” 

Two minutes later, SIU came down the field weaving through the defense and closing in on the goal. In the crowd of players in front of the Bruin goal, Bretchel was able to put her third shot of the game into the back of the net putting Southern up 1-0.

“I challenged them at half time because I felt we didn’t compete as hard as we need to, to get results,” Williams said. “I thought Liz in particular with her work rate was working hard to make things happen and it’s no surprise to me that she’s the one who wound up on the back of the goal.” 

With just over 11 minutes left to play, a corner kick was given to SIU, but the kick hit the side of the net and went out of bounds giving the possession to Belmont.

With six minutes left to play, the Bruins came down taking a close shot to the left side of the goal, but it was blocked by Mihalache.

Time ran out for the Bruins in the second half and they were unable to score against the Southern defense. 

SIU held on to the lead and took home the win at 1-0.

“Winning makes everything better and it sharpens the desire for them to be their best,” Williams said.

You can catch the Salukis (3-1) back in action for their final game of the homestand  on Sunday at 1 pm against IUPUI.

Sports reporter Tamar Mosby can be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter at @mosbytamar.

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