The women’s soccer team coasted past the Warriors of Nyack College on Wednesday, September 26, with a 5-2 win on the road. Freshman forward Susanne Vistnes led the Pioneers offense with one goal and three assists for the game. Vistnes added yet another three goals in the game against St. Thomas Aquinas College on Saturday, September 29.
The Pioneers have shown in earlier matches that they have a strong offense, led by Vistnes and junior forward Alexa Niciforo. When the Pioneers traveled to Nyack College, Niciforo and Vistnes kept leading the way. It took only 14 minutes before the two of them linked up for the first time, when Vistnes found Niciforo in front of the goal to get the Pioneers on the board.
Only seven minutes later, the Warriors equalized, but the Pioneers answered twice before halftime. Senior captain Prudence Rydstrom and junior midfielder Lauren Bischoff added a tally each to give the visitors a two-goal lead going into halftime.
The Pioneers did not waste any time in the second half when Vistnes served freshman mid¬fielder Hanna Westerling for the Pioneers’ fourth goal, while Vistnes added the fifth herself. The Warriors scored another with 13 minutes remaining, but the Pioneers easily held on to their three-goal advantage to seal the victory at 5-2.
The game was never a real challenge for the fifteenth-ranked Pioneers. They held a 16-11 shot advantage, and senior goalkeeper Nicole Fierro only had to make four saves to earn the win.
Junior captain Karina Rizzo played outstanding defense for the Pioneers, and added two assists to move the Pioneers to 7-1-1. “It was a great win for us. We were expected to win, and it was good to put the game away early on,” Rizzo said after the game. She pointed out a couple of factors helping to make the team successful: “The fact that we are able to get up for the games together and fight hard all game long, gives us an edge compared to other teams in the region.” Moving forward, the captain calls for the same attitude from her teammates. “We need to take care of each game individually in order to be successful and achieve our goal of being champions, both in the region and in the conference.”
The Pioneers continued the road towards their season’s goals on Saturday, September 29, when the ECC match-up against St. Thomas Aquinas College was moved to Brookville, due to in¬clement weather in upstate New York. The girls took advantage of being on home turf, but the game was even at 0-0 by halftime.
The Pioneers only used two minutes of the second half to get themselves on the board. Vistnes netted her first goal of the evening after a great pass from junior midfielder Jeanine Ambrogi. Vistnes found sophomore midfielder Solveig Bjordal to make the score 2-0 in favor of the Pioneers. Vistnes would later add another two goals herself to put the Pioneers ahead 4-0.
The Niciforo sisters combined for the next two goals, with freshman midfielder Jackie Niciforo finding her older sister, Alexa, on the fifth goal. In addition, Jackie Niciforo scored a goal to wrap up the game at 6-0.
“It was an amazing feeling to score my first hat-trick in college, and I’m so proud to be a part of this team,” Vistnes said after the game.
The Pioneers are now 8-1-1 for the season, and return to action on Wednesday, October 3, against Mercy College for another ECC game. The game is at Dobbs Ferry, and kickoff is set for 1:30 p.m.