By Philip De Montmollin, St. Thomas (Fla.) Sports Information Director
BABSON PARK, Fla. – St. Thomas (Fla.) defeated a ranked opponent for the second time this season with a 3-2 win over no. 22 Robert Morris (Ill.) on Wednesday in a neutral site matchup in Babson Park, Fla. Seniors Sara Mira (two goals, one assist) and Melony Poviones (two assists) led the Bobcats in the come-from-behind win. St. Thomas remained undefeated improving its record to 4-0-1 on the year. Robert Morris fell to 1-2-1.
The victory over Robert Morris combined with an early season win at Mobile (Ala.) gives St. Thomas two wins against teams ranked in both the preseason and current NAIA Coaches' Top 25 Poll. Robert Morris opened the year ranked 15th and is currently ranked 22nd. Mobile was ranked seventh in the preseason poll and is currently ranked no. 8.
In a game delayed due to lightning, RMU’s leading scorer Florence Dadson scored in the 21st minute off a Carolynn Wieland assist to open the scoring. Poviones connected with Mira for STU’s first goal of the game in the 38th minute. Just one minute later, Dadson struck again to give the Eagles a 2-1 advantage heading into the half. After a scoreless 21 minutes to open the second half, senior Courtney Trujillo finished off a chance provided this time by Mira to tie the game for a second time at 2-2. With less than eight minutes to play in regulation, Mira scored the game-winning goal off another assist by Poviones. STU’s defense, anchored by Trujillo and senior Emelie Johansson, held off the Eagles for the final seven-plus minutes to seal the victory for the Bobcats.
As a team, St. Thomas outshot the Eagles, 32-6 with an 21-3 shots on goal advantage. Mira alone had a total of 10 shots, nine of which were on goal. The Bobcats played a clean game overall committing just four fouls and not allowing a single RMU corner kick. In the decisive second half, the Bobcats did not commit a foul and allow a shot on goal by the Eagles.
Mira now has six goals and four assists on the season for a total of 16 points. Mira now has three game-winning goals on the 2013 season, which ranked second in the NAIA national rankings. The senior forward from Pembroke Pines, Fla. raised her career goal total to 43, ranking second on the school’s all-time goals list. Poviones, a senior center midfielder from Miami, has three goals to go along with three assists on the season.
St. Thomas returns to play on Sunday at 1 p.m. vs. St. Leo. The Bobcats then begin Sun Conference play at home vs. SCAD Savannah on Friday, September 27 at 4 p.m.