NORTH MANCHESTER, IND. – A rebound shot off the foot of sophomore forward/midfielder Maranda Birmingham (Kouts, Ind.) provided plenty of joy for fans at Good Field Saturday, Oct. 8.
Birmingham registered her fifth goal of the season, gathering a knocked-away attempt by junior midfielder Courtney Hersick (Plymouth, Ind.) and depositing it into the visiting net to break a 1-1 tie at 60:17. Sophomore goalkeeper Caroline Smith (Mason, Ohio) made the score stand up as the match winner over the rest of the second half, recording 10 saves as Manchester University broke into the win column with a 2-1 decision over the visiting Rose-Hulman Fightin' Engineers.
MU, improving to 1-8 overall and 1-2 in the league, posted its second win in the series' past four seasons. Hersick, resuming a span of tallying scores in three of her last four outings, got the Homecoming Week clash off to a strong start less than 10 minutes in, hitting a perfectly placed shot over the head of visiting keeper Carli Weinberg from the 18-yard area for a 1-0 advantage. Rose-Hulman answered in the waning moments of the first half for a tie which remained on the scoreboard until Hersick and Birmingham got loose in the Fightin' Engineers' end in the opening stages of the second half.
Hersick placed five shot attempts for the Black and Gold with three being on goal, while Birmingham added two with both being on frame. Smith's third straight double-digit saves total aided the home side's defense in taming a 34-9 Rose-Hulman shots advantage.
Manchester University resumes a set of back-to-back home contests Wednesday, Oct. 12. Franklin College comes to North Manchester for a 4 p.m. kickoff.