Marian women's soccer rallies to defeat Benedictine

Meghan Batzner goes after the ball.

LISLE, Ill. - Marian University women's soccer (8-9-0, 5-5-0 NACC) trailed twice but scored four goals in the second half to defeat Benedictine 4-2.

The Eagles would manage the only goal in the first half as Benedictine went on to outshoot Marian 13-6.  Freshman Amy Birner stood strong in goal, however, and managed to make eight saves and keep the Sabres in the game.

The second half saw a complete shift in momentum as Marian outshot the Eagles 15-8.  Sophomore Alicia Balken netted the first goal of the game for the Sabres to tie the game in the 55th minute, assist to senior Reilly Louko, but the Eagles would score 12 seconds later to retake the lead at 2-1.

From there, the Sabres netted three unanswered goals in a span of 5:19 to complete a crucial comeback.  Louko tied the game to open the streak at the 70:18 mark, off of assists from senior Karissa Preston and junior Allyson VanZeeland, before Preston gave the Sabres their first lead at 72:54 with a corner kick goal.

Balken then netted her second goal of the game, another assist to Preston, in the 76th minute to seal the final.

Benedictine and Marian each finished with 21 shots with Birner closing out the victory with 10 saves.  Balken led the Sabres with six shots, while senior Alexis Peterson added five shots.

Marian closes out the regular season at Edgewood Wednesday, Oct. 24 at 7 p.m. in NACC action.  With a win, the Sabres will clinch a berth in the NACC Tournament.  Marian can finish as high as fifth in the NACC standings.

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