Catawba holds off Bobcats, 3-1

SALISBURY, N.C. --- Mary Kirkman tallied two goals and Bethany Davis made 11 saves to lead the Catawba College women's soccer team to a 3-1 win over Lees-McRae College in non-conference action on Wednesday evening.

Lees-McRae (8-5-1) outshot Catawba (9-6) by an 18-8 margin in the match, including a 10-3 advantage in the first half, while putting 12 shots on frame. MaryBeth Sullivan (Greensboro, N.C.) posted her fourth goal of the season to pace the Bobcats, becoming the 10th player in program history to reach the 30-goal plateau. Sullivan and Erica Allen (Norton, Ohio) recorded five and three shots, respectively, as Kaitlyn Briggs (Oviedo, Fla.) made two saves.

Kirkman led the way for Catawba with a brace, connecting on two of her three shots as Amy Iwanicki added a pair of assists. Athena Bless also found the back of the net for the Catawba Indians, while Taylor Arrowood chipped in an assist and Davis turned in 11 saves.

Catawba got off to a flying start in the fifth minute, taking a 1-0 lead when Kirkman finished a through ball from Iwanicki. The Catawba Indians would hold the advantage through the interval and into the 57th minute, when Kirkman and Iwanicki connected again to push the lead to 2-0.

The Bobcats would answer in the 74th minute, when Sullivan got to a loose ball in the area and lifted the finish over the Catawba keeper to halve the margin to 2-1. Catawba answered 45 seconds later, pushing the lead to 3-1 when Bless knocked in a corner from Arrowood.

Lees-McRae returns to the pitch on Saturday when the Bobcats travel to Wilson, N.C. to resume their Conference Carolinas schedule against Barton College at 5 p.m.

- LMC -