DANBURY, Conn. – Brooke Gallagher and Kaleigh Panek each scored goals to lead the top-seed Western Connecticut State University Colonials to a 2-0 win over fourth-seed University of Southern Maine Huskies in the first semifinal game of the 2018 Little East Conference Women's Soccer Championship Tournament Friday afternoon at The WAC.
With the win, Western Connecticut advances to the championship game of the 2018 LEC tournament and will face the winner of the third-seed UMass Boston vs. second-seed Eastern Connecticut game played later today. The Colonials are now 13-0 on the season. Making its first appearance in the tournament semifinals since 2005, Southern Maine concludes its season with a record of 14-5-1. The Huskies' 14 wins are a program best.
Despite outshooting the Huskies 25-12 in the game, Western Connecticut was unable to get on the scoreboard until the 56th minute when Gallagher scored the eventual game-winning goal off of an assist from Allison Oakley. The goal is Gallagher's second of the season. The Colonials doubled their advantage in the 72nd minute when Panek put one into the back of the nets off of an assist from Jasmine Grey.
The Huskies had an opportunity to go up 1-0 over WCSU in the first half on a penalty kick, but the strike hit the post and went wide in the 31st minute. The 29th minute Huskies' junior Emma Cost (Waterboro, Maine/Massabesic) had a near goal that ricocheted off of the cross bar. In the second half, Southern Maine also had a near-goal, but it was called back due to an offsides infraction in the 58th minute.
WCSU goalkeeper Karly Martin made four saves to earn the shutout for the Colonials. Southern Maine senior Taylor Canastra (Fairhaven, Mass.) made 10 saves in the loss.