No.17 Florida Tech took an early lead, and earned its first-ever victory against the University of Tampa with a 3-0 win on Saturday evening, keeping the pressure on Rollins at the top of the Sunshine State Conference.
Entering the game 0-4-4 all-time against the Spartans, the Panthers took the lead in the second minute when Teresa Brantley’s ball into the penalty area found DeeDee Newland, who shot low into the left corner of the net.
The Panthers continued to press forward, forcing Spartans goalkeeper Kendall Bourdon into five first half saves, and found a second goal in the final minute of the half as Paula Lillsjo scored her first goal of the season.
Tampa played better in the second half, but was unable to beat Panthers goalkeeper Mellissa Pyles, who made eight saves to record the shutout. Florida Tech put the game away in the 69th minute when Jennifer Gillette converted a penalty kick after a foul in the area.
The loss was the third straight for the Spartans, who currently sit seventh in the SSC standings. Tampa returns home for its final regular season game against rival Saint Leo on Wednesday night.