Elon WSOC Falls 2-1 on William & Mary’s Late Winner

WILLIAMSBURG, Va. – Tori Baliatico scored to equalize the match at 1-1 in the 78th minute for Elon University women’s soccer, but William & Mary escaped as Mackenzie Kober’s 85th-minute goal gave the Tribe a 2-1 victory on Friday night, Oct. 12, at Martin Family Stadium on Albert-Daly Field.


After Grace Santos’ first goal of the season put the Tribe ahead 1-0 in the 52nd minute, Baliatico scored in the 78th minute off a perfect pass from fellow senior Lauren McKeever to level the match. In the end, William & Mary responded as Kober scored the match winner with just over five minutes remaining to snatch the victory late for the Tribe.

“The first half was by far our best display so far this season,” said head coach Neil Payne. “We retained the ball effectively and our movement and possession had a purpose. They went very direct in the second half and applied a lot of pressure high up the field, which we had to deal with. Kate [McKay] and Lily [Harkes] in particular were colossal in dealing with that style and looked like experienced veterans rather than freshmen. We created great chances, had another goal disallowed, and also hit the crossbar. Overall, we’re very pleased with our performance and we can draw a lot of positives from this game. We’re proud of the effort our players are showing.”

The Phoenix falls to 3-7-3 overall and 1-4-0 in CAA action with the loss. William & Mary’s victory improves its overall mark to 6-7-1 and its CAA record 3-2-1 this season.

In the first half, Elon nearly got on the board in the sixth minute. Baliatico surged forward and beat several defenders, but William & Mary goalkeeper Katelyn Briguglio made the save. That would prove to be the only shot on goal in the first 45 minutes of action.

Baliatico created another chance in the 40th minute after taking the ball to the right of the box and beating a Tribe defender by cutting inside. However, William & Mary got a defender in front of her shot and the match stayed scoreless.

The Tribe nearly got on the board in the 44th minute as Charlotte Hyland’s shot clanked off the crossbar and Mackenzie Kober’s follow-up header missed over the goal. Even though William & Mary had a 5-2 advantage in the shot count, the match was even at 0-0 at the break.

In the second half, the Tribe got on the board in the 52nd minute as Grace Santos scored her first-career goal for the Tribe off Sarah Segan’s assist.

Undaunted, the Phoenix would answer in the 78th minute. McKeever intercepted a pass and her through-pass found Baliatico inside the six-yard box. Baliatico’s composed finish equalized the match at 1-1 with just over 11 minutes left in regulation.

William & Mary would then snatch the victory in the 85th minute. Kober exchanged a give-and-go with Segan near the top of the box and finished into the right corner to put the Tribe up 2-1. Hannah Doherty nearly came up with a second equalizer for the Phoenix just seconds later, but her attempt hit off the crossbar and William & Mary held on for the win.

The Tribe outshot the Phoenix 17-6 in the match and had a 4-1 advantage in the corner count. In goal for Elon, Valentina Estrada made four saves, which included a big save in the 71st minute to keep the Phoenix within a goal of William & Mary.

The Phoenix returns to Rudd Field for its final home match of the regular season on Sunday, Oct. 14, against defending CAA Champion Hofstra. The match is scheduled to kick off at noon.