Fifth-Ranked Emory Defeats Piedmont 3-0 in Opening Match of NCAA Tournament
Emory University junior Merrill Bachouros scored a pair of goals in the second half on Saturday night, leading the fifth-ranked Eagles to a 3-0 win over Piedmont College in the first round of the NCAA Championships at the Woodruff P.E. Center.
After a scoreless first half, Bachouros gave the Eagles the lead at the 49:01 mark, scoring her sixth goal of the season off passes from sophomores Clare Mullins and Kelly Costopoulos.
Just over two minutes later, the same trio of players hooked up for a second goal, with Bachouros launching another shot into the back of the net off passes from Mullins and Costopoulos.
Bachouros is now tied for the team lead with seven goals this season, and is second on the squad with 18 points. Mullins upped her assist total on the season to three, while Costopoulos picked up her fifth and sixth assists of the campaign, tying her for the team lead.
The Eagles picked up another insurance goal in the 69th minute, when senior Lidija Barauskas took a pass from freshman Emily Feldman in the center of the box, and sent a shot into the net for her fifth goal of the season. It was the sixth assist of the year for Feldman, who leads all Emory scorers with 20 points this year.
Meanwhile, despite a sluggish start to the game for the Emory offense, the Eagles were able to dominate defensively, limiting Piedmont to just one shot, and no shots on goal. Emory outshot Piedmont 31-1 in the game, including a 16-0 advantage in shots on goal.
Emory junior goalkeepers Erica Stein and Kaele Leonard each played a half in goal, with neither making a save. Leonard earned the victory to improve to 6-0-1 on the year.
Piedmont sophomore goalkeeper Marjorie Hammond made 13 saves in the game, including eight during a scoreless first half.
With the win, Emory's undefeated season remains intact with an overall record of 16-0-2. In addition, the shutout was the 15th of the campaign for the Eagles, a new school record. Piedmont's season came to a close with an overall mark of 17-3-1.
The Eagles will now advance to the second round of the tournament on Sunday at 5:00 PM at the Woodruff P.E. Center, where they will face the winner of the Centre College-Roanoke College later this evening.