Worcester, MA --- Kelly Ames (Glastonbury, CT) scored with just twenty seconds remaining in regulation to lift WPI to a dramatic 1-0 triumph over Wentworth in women's soccer action on Thursday evening.
WPI is now 2-7-1 on the season and was victorious for the first time since its season opener. The Leopards, who fall to 2-7, have now dropped four straight one-goal decisions, including three by 1-0 scores.
The game appeared headed for overtime when, with less than 30 seconds remaining, the Crimson and Gray went on the offensive. After a shot by Courtney Langley (Fairfield, ME) was deflected by Leopard goalkeeper Jess Gardner (Wilbraham, MA), a scramble ensued and Ames knocked the ball past the goal line, just in front in Gardner, who had been bounced behind the line. It was Ames' second goal of the season and the second assist for Langley.
WPI had a chance to get on the board just 30 seconds into the match when Kayla Rayworth (West Boylston, MA) launched an arcing shot past a Leopard defender from the left side of the Wentworth box, only to be intercepted by Gardner. Later in the half, Wentworth's Tori Armishaw (Scarborough, ME) had an opportunity off a streaking drive towards the right corner, only to have the ball knocked away on an outstanding play by WPI netminder Maddie Willer (Penfield, NY) with 28:12 remaining.
Then with 3:54 left in the half, Wentworth's Maddy Lanoue (Pittsfield, MA) had a blast from the low-right hand corner, only to be stopped courtesy of a diving save by Willer. The Engineers' goalkeeper came up strong yet again three minutes later, catching a free kick by Lucy Brown (Plainville, CT) with 39 seconds left as the teams went into halftime tied at zero.
The second half saw WPI nearly take the lead just two minutes in, only to see Armishaw swoop in for the Leopards and clear a shot by Rayworth. WPI nearly scored again when Langley had an excellent shot with 33:24 left, only to be denied by Gardner.
WPI had perhaps its best chance up until that point when Ames had a beautiful shot from the right side soar towards the corner of the goal with 10:17 left. Gardner was again up to the challenge, and the game remained scoreless. Wentworth had its own chance to get on the board when Brown had a free kick from the right side with 4:51 left, only to watch the ball fall wide left of the goal.
Gardner tallied 11 saves while Willer would finish with five. Overall, the Crimson and Gray outshot Wentworth 16-6, including a 12-1 advantage in the second half.
Both squads return to conference action on Saturday. WPI ventures to Babson where they will play the opener of a rare men's and women's NEWMAC doubleheader with the Beavers. Kickoff for the women is at noon while a 2:30pm start time is scheduled for the men. Wentworth hosts Gordon in a CCC match slated for noon.