When and Where: August 31, 2017 – Manchester, N.H. (Larkin Field)
Score: Southern New Hampshire University 2, Bentley University 0
Records: SNHU 1-0, Bentley 0-1
Junior Maddie Holt (Seabrook, N.H.) scored both Southern New Hampshire University goals on Thursday, as the Penmen blanked Bentley University, 2-0, in the season-opening game for both teams.
Classmate Melanie Rennie (Madison, Conn.) posted her fifth career shutout after steering aside 10 shots, including seven in the second half, to backstop SNHU to its fourth consecutive win in season openers.
Neither team was able to crack the scoreboard through the first 22-plus minutes of the opening stanza, but Holt broke the scoreless stalemate off a feed from sophomore Laura van der Doorn (Beverwijk, The Netherlands) with just under 13 minutes left before the half. van der Doorn collected the ball along the right side and tucked it past her defender and onto the stick of Holt, who was cutting across the front of the goal. Holt fired a one-time shot on cage that slipped past the Falcons' goalkeeper, and gave Southern New Hampshire all the offense it would need.
Rennie held the one-goal edge in check through the remainder of the first half and the majority of the second, as she stopped six shots before Holt was able to tack on an insurance marker. Redshirt-sophomore Katelin Oberlander (West Yarmouth, Mass.) sent a bounding ball into the circle for senior Erin Frost (East Andover, N.H.), who settled the feed and dodged a defender to go one-on-one with the keeper. After Frost's bid was stymied, Holt grabbed the rebound and punched it home with seven minutes left in regulation.
Jana Mones suffered the setback in goal for Bentley after making three stops, and Sam Simione chipped in with a defensive save of her own for the Falcons.
- Southern New Hampshire is unbeaten in season openers since the program returned to varsity status in 2014. The Penmen knocked off Roger Williams University in its inaugural contest before handling Saint Thomas Aquinas College in 2015 and Belmont Abbey College a season ago.
- Southern New Hampshire entered Thursday's game winless in four all-time meetings with Bentley. SNHU was outscored by a 15-1 margin in those games and had been shutout in three of the four outings.
- Thursday marked the fifth time in Rennie's career she notched double-digit saves. She set a career-high in 2016 with 14 saves against American International College.
- Southern New Hampshire has won six of its last nine games against Northeast-10 Conference competition.
The Penmen are back in action Saturday (September 2) when they travel to Molloy College for a 1 p.m. tilt with the Lions.
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