GOSHEN, Ind. - Offense was the name of the game as seven shots hit the back of the net and visiting Mount Vernon Nazarene University opened Crossroads League play with a 4-3 victory over the Maple Leafs Tuesday evening.
The visitors opened the scoring early. In just the fifth minute of play, Megan Griffith hit a low shot into the bottom left corner. The Cougars then opened a 2-0 lead in the 27th minute when Jessica Linger volleyed in her first of the night.
The Maple Leafs showed some early fight, though. Freshman Emma Caskey made a run down the left end line and found junior Marissa Weldy in the box. Weldy tapped into the wide open net, getting Goshen within one (2-1) with her first tally of the season.
The response from Mount Vernon came immediately. And again, it was through Linger. Her second of the match - she also scored twice against the Maple Leafs last season - put the visitors up 3-1, a lead that would hold through halftime.
Goshen continued to work back into the game, however. After assisting on the first Maple Leaf goal, Caskey scored the second by stealing a clearance in the box and drilling her second goal of the season into the upper corner.
Up by just one again (3-2), Mount Vernon and Linger were back at it. The senior forward completed a hat trick, easily finishing a cross from Brittney Bogantz in the 62nd minute.
The Leafs made one last run and managed to pull back within a single goal with two and a half minutes remaining when freshman Katelyn Vendrely lofted a swerving 30-yard strike into the upper 90.
The rally was too late, though, despitte Goshen out shooting Mount Vernon 16-13 overall and 12-11 on frame. Lynn Weaver made seven saves for the Leafs, while Eleni Miller had eight for the Cougars.
Goshen (4-6, 0-1 Crossroads League) is back in action when they host Indiana Wesleyan University Saturday night.