Naz plays Cortland for first time since 2007, wins

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CORTLAND, N.Y. — Freshman Danielle Christ’s first goal of the season with about 10 minutes left in the first half Tuesday proved to be the game-winner as visiting Nazareth held off Cortland for a 2-1 non-conference women’s soccer victory at Holloway Field.

It was the teams’ first women’s soccer meeting since 2007 as Nazareth improved to 7-3-1 overall. Cortland, coached by former Nazareth standout and Hall of Famer Heidi Axtell, dropped to 5-5-1 overall.

Each team scored early in the first half just 25 seconds apart. Christ’s goal came in the 35th minute after fellow freshman McKayla Hughes had control of the ball in the penalty area. She redirected to Christ near the top of the 18 and she one-timed a low shot into the lower left corner for her first career goal.

Each team had chances in the second half, but were unable to score. Nazareth’s best opportunity came on a shot by Sarah Merriwether in the 88th minute that was steered aside by Cortland keeper Danika Svendsen. Then, with time winding down in the final minute of the second half, Cortland had a chance, but Nazareth goalie Hannah Miller made a diving save on a shot by Jaden Galluzzo.

Nazareth’s first goal came just over three minutes into the game as freshman Megan McCraith scored for the third time this season by heading in a corner kick from the foot of Mia Longo. Galluzzo tied the score for Cortland just 25 seconds later as she broke past the Golden Flyers’ defense and slid a shot inside the left goal post.

Cortland had 15 shots to Nazareth’s 13 and the Red Dragons had a 7-5 edge in corner kicks. Miller finished with six saves, while Svendsen had eight.

Nazareth returns home Saturday to resume its Empire 8 Conference schedule against Sage at 1 p.m.

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