WALTHAM, Mass. – Brandeis University women's soccer senior forward Sofia Vallone (Wesport, Conn./Staples) scored a pair of goals just two minutes and 21 seconds apart in the second half to rally the Judges past visiting Gordon College, 3-1, this afternoon. With the win, the Judges, ranked fourth in New England, improve to 5-1-1 on the season, while the Fighting Scots fall to 6-2.
Brandeis outshot Gordon, 19-5, in the first half, including 7-1 in shots on goal, but neither team was able to find the back of the net. The second half opened with a flurry of activity. Gordon got of a pair of early shots that went wide, while rookie Kari Christsenson (Standish, Maine) stopped two early Brandeis attempts to keep the game deadlocked.
The Scots finally broke the ice in the 51st minute. Following a goal kick, the Judges committed a turnover in the defensive end. Gordon senior back Katie Knaus (Kensington, Conn.) chipped the ball over the defense, and sophomore midfielder Caitlin Nedde was on the spot to put the ball past Brandeis sophomore Francine Kofinas (Dix Hills, N.Y./Half Hollow Hills West) at the 50:40 mark.
Less than 90 seconds later, Vallone got the equalizer. The play started when junior midfielder Alanna Torre (Weston, Fla./American Heritage School) beat her defender. Torre fed the ball in front to Vallone, who tapped it home at the 52:15 mark. It was her team-leading fifth goal of the season and the 16th of her career.
Following senior midfielder Ellie Einhorn's (Winter Park, Fla./Trinity Park) blast that hit the crossbar 44 seconds after the tying goal, Vallone added her second of the game at 54:36. The ball was loose along the end line following a battle between both sides, and it popped loose onto Vallone's foot. She blasted it into the side netting for goal number six of the season and number 17 of her career. It was her second multi-goal game of the season.
The Judges added an insurance goal in the 79th minute. Senior forward Tiffany Pacheco (Rehoboth, Mass./Dighton-Rehoboth Regional) took a through ball from junior Mimi Theodore (Walpole, Mass./Walpole) and put it into the goal for her fourth of the season. Pacheco becomes the 10th player in school history with 25 career goals and moves into seventh on the career scoring list with 73 points, passing Melissa Gorenkoff '10.
For the game, Brandeis outshot Gordon, 35-11, and owned an 8-0 advantage in corner kicks. Christensen was outstanding in net with 11 saves in the losing effort. Kofinas had two stops to earn her second career victory.
The Judges return to action on Sunday afternoon at 1 p.m. when they take on Simmons College in Boston, while the Fighting Scots head to Biddeford, Maine, to face the University of New England in The Commonwealth Coast Conference action Saturday at 2:30 p.m.