Simon Riddough obviously liked what he saw from his team. (Photo courtesy of Hofstra)
HEMPSTEAD, N.Y. – Senior forward Miri Taylor scored twice, including the extratime game-winner as Hofstra claimed a 2-1 victory over UNCW to take sole possession of first place in the Colonial Athletic Association Sunday afternoon.
Hofstra head coach Simon Riddiough, in his 16th season as coach, recorded his 200th career win.
Taylor scored in the 102nd minute for the Pride (12-1-0, 4-0-0) while UNCW dropped to 7-2-1, 3-1-0. She has recorded at least one point in 25 consecutive regular season matches. Her 2.69 points per game and 35 points leads the nation in both categories.
In addition to Taylor recording her 13th and 14th goals of the season, fifth-year midfielder Lucy Porter recorded her fourth and fifth assists in her last two matches, while Lucy Shepherd and Ellen Halseth each recorded one point. Goalkeeper Skylar Kuzmich finished with six saves.
As expected, it was a very intense matchup, with it being a crucial contest for both teams. The first half was very even, and though Hofstra held an 8-5 advantage in shots at the intermission, the top two goalkeepers in the league, Kuzmich and Kaylie Bierman each had four saves.
Hofstra stomped on the gas pedal right out of halftime, as five minutes into the second half, Porter forced a turnover at midfield and fed it to Shepherd just inside the box who was able to slide a pass in for Taylor directly in front of the target.
Porter is moved into second place all-time at Hofstra with 109 career points. She surpassed Sam Scolarici (108) and trails only Leah Galton, who had 122 points from 2012-15.
The Pride continued to pile on the offensive chances with six opportunities in the next 20 minutes, but after one of Kuzmich’s biggest saves of the day, UNCW tallied the equalizer in the 76th minute.
Kuzmich made one save right off the bat to open up the first extra period, but the Pride held momentum. Taylor had a great look at the start of double overtime, but redeemed herself with the beautiful golden goal in the 102nd minute of play. Halseth stormed up the field, passed it out to Porter, and Porter chipped it in for Taylor who volleyed home the game-winner.
Hofstra will look for its 16th consecutive home victory when it hosts Northeastern University Thursday at 7 p.m.