The Ramblers received another outstanding effort from senior goalie Emily Loeb, but they couldn’t convert their chances on offense in a 1-0 loss to Francis Parker on Monday in Chicago.
A four-year varsity veteran and captain, Loeb made a sensational save with her lower body late in the first half to keep the game scoreless at intermission. She recorded two more saves in the first nine minutes of the second half before the Colonels broke through at the 13:32 mark to go ahead.
The Ramblers responded on the other end with a couple of scoring opportunities, but they came up empty. The closest call was when senior and captain Kara Finneke hit the left post.
The loss was the first for the Ramblers against an in-state team in three games, although it did nothing to deter Loyola head coach Misty Brady from looking on the bright side. It was the team’s fourth game in four days following a trip to the St. Louis area last weekend.
“I liked our passing patterns, and we were hungry in the circle,” she said. “We just couldn’t finish. We did a nice job of rising to the challenge of playing a skilled team, but we need to be better.”
Brady saved her highest praise for Loeb, who owns three shutouts this season and a 1.67 goals against average.
“She played a tremendous game,” she said. “In my opinion, she’s the No. 1 goalie in the state. She’s aggressive, but she plays with finesse and fundamentals. She’s very quick to react to the ball.”
In her first season at Loyola, Brady brings a strong background in the sport to the program. A native of Virginia, she played college field hockey at Davidson College. She said she immediately was drawn to the Ramblers.
“I had some other coaching opportunities, but I was waiting for the right team,” Brady said. “They are great kids who exhibit a lot of leadership and character and are smart. They had to adopt a whole new policy on the sport, and I wasn’t sure how they would handle it. But they are all in and willing to evolve.”
Loyola’s other two captains are seniors Camille Paracchini and Gigi Schaefer. The Ramblers started the season with 5-0 win over Antioch on Aug. 28 and followed it up with a 5-0 win over Lake Forest Academy on Sept. 4.