Bison Women’s Soccer Gain a Huge Win in Patriot League Opener

Logan Kinajil-Moran, Contributing Writer

Bison women’s soccer got off to a stellar start in their 2021 Patriot League campaign with an impressive 4-2 win over two-time defending champions Navy on Saturday.

The Bison took a 3-0 courtesy of two goals from Rylee Donaldson ’23 and one goal from Kelley Francis ’25. Navy pulled two back in the second half to make it 3-2 for a nervy ending until Teresa Deda ’25 sealed the win with her first collegiate goal with five minutes remaining.

“The team was very excited to play against Navy, especially because it was parent’s weekend. For the past three years, we have not beat Navy, so emotions were very high leading into this game,” Leanne Engemann ’23 said.

The Orange and Blue have been firing on the offensive side with seven goals in their last two games and outshooting Navy 17-10. Navy had not conceded four goals in a single Patriot League game since 2005. Engemann attributed this performance to the team’s preparation. “Our confidence we have gained going into Patriot League play has influenced our goal scoring the most thus far,” Engemann said.

First-year striker Kelley Francis put on a brilliant Patriot League debut, scoring with her first touch after coming on before a corner kick in the 25th minute.

“​​After scoring my first Patriot League goal, I felt excited and hungry for more goals. Scoring four goals on Navy made me feel like we really have a chance to win a Patriot League championship.”

“The team as a whole is my support system here at Bucknell. I am so fortunate to be able to have the opportunity to play on the women’s soccer team because I have already made lifelong friendships. The leadership on this team is so amazing, and I think we have a really special bond this year, which is why we are connecting so well on the field,” Francis said.

A memorable performance by Deda with a goal and assist won her the Patriot League Midfielder and Rookie of the Week.

The win sends a firm message to the rest of the Patriot League, showing that they mean business this season. 

The Bison followed up with a 3-0 victory over American on Sept. 22. The Bison got goals from Paige Temple ’25, Donaldson, and Abby Gehart ’23.  

The Bison look to continue their winning streak on Sep. 25, at 7 pm at Colgate.

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