Late heroics prove the difference as women’s soccer defeats Mercer in home opener

John Watson, Sports Editor

There is no place quite like home. Back at Hodges Stadium for the first time this season, the Osprey women’s soccer team found a way to get the job done and hold off the Mercer Bears.

Improving to 3-1 on the season, the lone goal in this 1-0 game came off a corner kick which Thais Reiss was able to receive and put in the back of the net. The goal in the 78th minute marks Reiss’s third goal of the season.

Scoring her third goal of the season, Thais Reiss continues to be an important piece of the UNF attack (Justin Nedrow)

The game started with paced possessions from both teams and a tempo that wasn’t favorable to either side. After a back and forth half with crafty defense by both the Bears and the Ospreys, the teams headed into the locker room with an even scoreboard.

Looking at the halftime stats, the Ospreys created more opportunities with eight shots, but most of these weren’t quality chances. While the Bears only had two shots at the half, they kept within striking distance, using defense and ball control to fend off a lethal Osprey attack.

Coming out of the half, the Ospreys continued to put pressure on the Bears’ defense and played with a purpose to finish this one in regulation. Mercer had a plan of their own and gave the Osprey defense a run for their money. Osprey goalkeeper Mercedes Sapp looked sharp in the box as the Bears had some good looks in the second half. Posting her second shutout of the season, Sapp continues to make clutch plays.

Mercedes Sapp posted five saves in her second shutout win of the season (Justin Nedrow)

The Ospreys controlled the ball much in the second half, created opportunities, and tested the Mercer defense. Pushing the Bears to the brink, the Ospreys forced six corner kicks in the second half. After a run of so-close yet so-far chances, the game-winner came with just 11 minutes left in regulation.


With their second 1-0 win in a row, the Ospreys have started a three-game homestand that includes upcoming matches against Winthrop and Charleston Southern.

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