Header Photo: Mayara Queiroz Reis – Credit: Florida Tech Athletics
The Florida Tech Panthers (6-2-5, 2-2-4 SSC) got their third win over a ranked opponent on Wednesday, taking down #16 Palm Beach Atlantic (9-4, 6-3 SSC) 3-1 in a Sunshine State Conference match at Rick Stottler Field.
After beating No. 25 Colorado School of Mines on September 18 thus snapping their 24-game unbeaten streak, the Panthers then beat No. 2 Columbus State on October 25 and tonight took down the Sailfish who were in first place in the SSC coming into the contest.
The Panthers got on the board early when Hannah Mansson threw it in and after a pass got the ball back to her, she booted the ball down the field and just ahead of Mayara Queiroz Reis, who ran it down inside the 18-yard box and ripped it past PBA goalie Rachel Neumann, into the lower corner of the net just 6:13 into the match.
It took just 2:36 for the Panthers to strike again as Marem Ndiongue was fighting for the ball and never let up, turning and finding Alyssa Bartle who let a shot go from about 22 yards out. It seemed to surprise Neumann, who made an unsuccessful dive at the ball. With that, the Panthers were up 2-0.
That was more than enough for freshman goaltender Paige Lewkutz, who was making her first start for the Panthers in this one in place of Maria Sanchez Recuero who was named the Sunshine State Conference defensive player of the week on Monday.
Lewkutz made five saves in the shutout on a night when Palm Beach Atlantic mustered just eight shots. Half of those shots came in the first half and three were saved by Lewkutz.
On the other side, the Panthers took 13 shots with eight on goal. Neumann made three saves in each half.
Queiroz Reis was the Panthers leader in shots with five. Three of those were shots on goal. No one else managed more than two shots.
For more info: PBA @ Florida Tech Box Score
Florida Tech is on the road Saturday at Tampa with a 7:00 p.m. tilt against the Spartans.