Lady Chants end Radford’s 19-game undefeated streak

Sam Patterson scored a first-half goal and the Coastal Carolina women’s soccer team made it stand up as it knocked off first-place Radford 1-0 Wednesday afternoon at CCU Soccer Field.

Patterson’s goal off assists by Kacey Kelley and Fia Jonsson in the 15th minute was enough to give the Chanticleers (9-7-1, 6-3-0 BSC) their third straight victory as they continued their push to climb the Big South standings.

Coastal also handed Radford (12-2-1, 8-1-0 BSC) its first conference loss of the season and snapped the Highlanders’ 19-game regular-season unbeaten streak in league play. Radford’s last defeat against a conference foe came in the finale of the 2011 season against Campbell.

“It’s a great win for the program,” Coastal head coach Paul Hogan said. “Excited for the girls that it showed we can beat a top team in the league. More importantly for us, it’s three more points. We’re playing to host a conference tournament first-round game and that’s all we care about.”

Megan Spencer recorded six saves include some big ones in the second half to preserve the lead en route to her fifth solo shutout of the season. Coastal tied a school record with its ninth shutout of the campaign, equaling the total in 2007.

The Chanticleers came out attacking in the game’s opening moments, but Radford countered and was able to control much of the play over the first 10 minutes. However, Patterson converted Coastal’s first shot attempt of the game.

After CCU worked the ball into Radford’s defensive half, Patterson lofted the ball into the middle of the box to Jonsson, who passed it Kelley and she fed a cutting Patterson on the right side. The freshman finished with play with a 10-yard shot past diving Radford goalkeeper Che’ Brown into the left corner. It was Patterson’s second goal of the year, the team-leading fifth assist for Kelley and the third for Jonsson.

The Chants had a couple of chances in the opening half to add to their lead. In the 20th minute, Jonsson charged a loose ball into the box and blocked the clearing attempt by Brown. The ball richocheted backward and just missed the right post.

Patterson then put a shot on goal in the 29th minute, lofting a high ball from the top of the box that a leaping Brown was able to tip it over the crossbar.

Coastal had an anxious moment in the 39th minute as a long shot by Rachel Conway got by Spencer as she lost it in the sun. However, the ball caromed off the crossbar on a high bounce and Spencer was able to grab it.

Just over 10 minutes into the second half, Spencer made a diving save on a shot by Kara Wade. The rebound came out to the right side where Julie Ruh’e was there, but she put her shot high over the goal.

Ruh’e then had a point blank attempt in the 69th minute, but Spencer again dove to her left to make the stop. Ruh’e later got off a couple of more shots, but one went high and the other wide.

The Highlanders last opportunity came on a long shot by Sahar Aflaki in the 89th minute that also missed the net wide. Coastal’s Morgan Smith was then able to gain control and dribble the ball into Radford’s half in the final seconds.

Radford finished with a 19-14 advantage in shots, though Coastal had a slim 7-6 edge in attempts on goal. The Highlanders had five corner kicks to the Chants’ four.

Coastal travels to Liberty Saturday, Oct. 26 for another important matchup at 2 p.m. The Chants then close out the regular season by hosting Charleston Southern for Senior Day on Tuesday, Oct. 29 at 7 p.m.

Photo by Joel Beachum, Carolina Clicks Photos

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