Robert Morris falls to Valparaiso in home opener


Samantha Dutch

Sheridan Reid carries the ball against Valparaiso.

Samuel Goldberg

MOON TOWNSHIP— After a solid victory over former conference opponent Mount St. Mary’s, RMU women’s soccer looked to keep the good times rolling against Valparaiso on Sunday.

The Colonials (1-2) fought hard, but the Beacons (1-1-2) escaped with a win, leaving the Colonials with a sour taste in their mouths at their first game at home.

The first half entailed the feeling-out process as neither team really had any chances to score. Both teams looked to control the pace of the first half but it was just back-and-forth possession for both teams.

Both goalkeepers, Nikki Coryell and Courtney Worstell, held their own in the first half with the two of them serving as commanding presences in their respective nets and making key stops.

The Colonials came out fast and furious in the second half, striking in the 50th minute as Haleigh Finale capitalized on a great pass from Kaoru Hayashi to make it 1-0.

Valpo didn’t give in despite the deficit as they answered with a goal of their own in the 61st minute by Abbey Hillman, who beat Worstell on the far side, probably a goal Worstell wants back.

The Beacons took the lead late, as in the 74th minute, Abby White took a beautiful feed from Kelsie James to give Valpo the 2-1 lead.

RMU had a chance late as Emily Rocco broke off for a breakaway opportunity, but Coryell stood tall, squandering the best chance the Colonials had since their goal.

RMU had one last chance to tie the game late, but ultimately, they couldn’t put the ball in the back of the net. Despite the loss, the Colonials showed a lot of fight and should be prepared come Horizon League play.

Goal-scorer Haleigh Finale did not hang her head after the loss.

“Overall I thought we played well… we couldn’t finish our chances that we had. We had 14 shots on net… if we finish a couple of those we put ourselves in a much better place to win this game.”

For a team that struggled last season during the pandemic, they were solid out on the pitch today and should only get better as the season goes along.

This team will be a force come Horizon League play as there were a lot of positives to take away from this game. The Colonials’ next game will be against a familiar foe in Saint Francis on September 2 in Loretto.