By Joe Pantorno, Sports Editor
After losing three straight games, the Hofstra University women's soccer team stormed back into CAA Tournament contention with a pair of 2-0 wins, over Georgia State on Friday and UNC-Wilmington on Sunday.
"It's been a transformation over the past couple of weeks," said head coach Simon Riddiough. "There's a difference in attitude, difference in willingness to apply what we are doing and I think individually they are holding themselves accountable for what's going on."
Senior midfielder Courtney Breen led Hofstra with a goal scored in each of the games, taking some of the offensive pressure off senior striker Laura Greene, who did not find the back of the net over the weekend.
"We always say it's between Greene, Breen and [senior midfielder Brittany] Butts," said Riddiough. "And if you stop all of them we won't win many games, but Courtney Breen has been finding a way and it's looking pretty positive."
Friday's game against Georgia State brought a stylish return for freshman midfielder Anya Koren who scored her first career goal, after missing eight games due to injury, in the eighty-sixth minute after a strike from Greene was parried right into Koren's path.
"Having Anya back from injury is a huge positive for us," said Riddiough. "It allows us to move people around and give people longer breaks in order to make us more effective over the 90 minutes."
Breen gave Hofstra the lead earlier in the second half when Greene played distributor, setting up the midfielder in the fifty-sixth minute.
After Breen's goal Georgia State had a small flurry of chances, but senior goalkeeper Emily Morphitis was sublime in net, making five saves.
Morphitis was not as busy on Sunday afternoon against UNC-Wilmington, making three saves as Hofstra again was the more dominant side throughout the game, peppering 21 shots on goal to UNC-Wilmington's nine.
Hofstra was ahead by the fourteenth minute when a Breen found the back of the net, but it was not the usual sister to score. Junior forward Erin Breen, Courtney's twin, scored the first goal of her career when Greene created yet another Hofstra chance, when her shot rebounded to the path of Breen, similar to Koren's goal two days earlier.
"We've started Erin the past couple of games and she's rewarded us with a goal," said Riddiough. "She's playing very well, she deserves to be where she's at and she's making a difference which is always good to see coming to the end of the season."
Courtney put the game away in the seventy-first minute, when she powered a header off a corner into the back of the net.