KEENE, N.H. -- The Keene State College women's soccer team exploded for six goals in the opening half to defeat the University of Southern Maine, 6-0, in a Little East Conference match Saturday afternoon at the Owl Athletic Complex.
The win was the fourth straight for the Owls who improve to 6-3-0 overall and 2-0-0 in the conference. The Huskies dropped their third straight to slip to 2-6-0 overall and 0-2-0 in LEC play.
Sophomore Jessica Berthiaume (Worcester, Mass./St. Peter Marian) led the Owls' offensive outburst scoring a pair of goals less than two minutes apart. Senior Melissa Dempsey (East Weymouth, Mass./Weymouth) chipped in with a goal and an assist.
Sophomore Kara Pavlidis (Lee, N.H./Oyster River) put the home side ahead to stay in the opening minute, one-timing home a cross from classmate Haley Kenyon (Exeter, R.I./Exeter-West Greenwich) for her first goal of the season.
Berthiaume scored in the 18th minute knocking home a free kick taken by Dempsey, and again in the 20th minute beating USM senior goalkeeper Kat Rothe (Leeds, Maine/Leavitt Area) one on one.
Junior Brittany Croteau (Swanzey, N.H./Monadnock Regional) tallied an unassisted goal in the 26th minute. Dempsey found the net in the 31 minute, and junior Joan Hamel (Weare, N.H./John Stark Regional) closed the scoring in the 39th minute.
The Owls employed three goalies during the course of the match. Senior Megan Dempsey (East Weymouth, Mass./Weymouth), Melissa's twin sister, played the first half and registered two saves. Freshmen Torrie Crenson (North Salem, N.Y.) and Victoria Tarabelli (Needham, Mass.) split the second half time. Neither had to make a stop. Rothe had 12 saves before giving way to freshman Sara Bishop (Frankfort, Maine/Hermon) in the 77th minute. Bishop, making her first collegiate appearance, had two saves over the final 13 minutes.
Southern Maine returns to play on Tuesday (4:00 p.m.) when it hosts the University of New England. Keene State will be at home on Tuesday night (6:30 p.m.) against Middlebury College.