NEW YORK - The Columbia women's soccer team tallied a pair of goals in the opening half to turn away visiting Sacred Heart, 2-0, Friday night at the Columbia Soccer Stadium. Beverly Leon notched the Lions first goal of the season in the 13th minute, while teammate Coleen Rizzo netted her first of the year in the 20th minute.
The Columbia offense came out firing in the early stages of the game with Rizzo placing a shot on net just 50 seconds into the game. It would be Leon that would break through first though for the Lions in the 13th minute.
Natalie Melo drove a corner kick into the middle of the box where it was batted around before Maya Marder could head it toward the net. Leon, in good positioning, was able to kick the ball past the Sacred Heart goalkeeper to put Columbia up 1-0 early on.
Just under seven minutes later, Rizzo put a shot into the back of the net. Receiving a feed from Isabel King of a throw in, Rizzo directed the ball into the near corner on a tough angle to double the Lions' lead to 2-0.
Columbia kept the pressure on throughout the half, but was unable to add to its lead. The Lions would finish the half with seven shots, while Sacred Heart managed only three. Columbia also registered the only three corner kicks of the contest in the first half.
The second half was a more evenly played 45 minutes of soccer, as Sacred Heart controlled the ball better than it had in the first half. The Pioneers would get credited with five shots in the half, four of which were saved by Columbia goalkeeper Grace Redmon.
Redmon collected six saves on the evening en route to her first shutout of the season.
Columbia will be back on the pitch Sunday evening, taking on BIG EAST foe St. John's. Kickoff of that match is slated for 7 p.m. at the Columbia Soccer Stadium.