Women’s Soccer Double OT Thriller End in Tie
The top-ranked women’s soccer team faced the eighth-ranked Washington University in St. Louis (Wash. U) Bears Sunday, tying them with a score of 2-2 on Sunday.
“The team kept it together and fought hard throughout all of the playing time,” junior midfielder Clare Mullins said.
Junior Veronica Romero saved the Eagles from defeat with a goal in the final 50 seconds of regulation. The Eagles’ record now stands at 8-0-3 on the season.
“Wash. U is no joke. The Bears are solid competition, and the team went into the game knowing we would have to push for the win,” Mullins said.
With this result, Emory remains tied with Wash. U, Brandeis University (Mass.) and Case Western Reserve University (Penn.) at the top of the UAA standing with a 1-0-1 record in the conference.
The first half of the game was relatively uneventful, with all four goals of the game coming in during the second half. The closest either squad came to scoring in the first period was in the 28th minute.
The Eagles were awarded a free kick, taken by junior defender Lauren Gorodetsky.
Her shot was taken from near the sideline, about 30 yards out, and she managed to get the ball past the Bears’ goalkeeper.
Sophomore forward Charlotte Butker claimed possession of the ball, but her ensuing touch shot was deflected by a Wash. U defender, and the opportunity was lost for the Eagles.
The half concluded with the game tied, each team having taken one shot on goal apiece. Wash. U held a 4-2 edge in total shots taken.
The Eagles came out strong to start the second half. Romero earned a shot on goal in the 50th minute, but the Wash. U defense would not allow the ball to find the back of the net.
Emory refused to back down, however, and managed to score the first point of the game and take the lead off of a free kick in the 59th minute. Gorodetsky took the kick once again, and she was able to find Romero in the box.
Romero then sent the ball past the Wash. U goalkeeper for a goal. The assist was Gorodetsky’s second on the year.
The Eagles were unable to hold their lead for long, however. At 59:11, just a minute later, the Bears answered Emory’s goal with one of their own.
In a similar play to the one executed by the Eagles just seconds before, Wash. U sent a free kick into the box before delivering the ball into the back of the net.
Then, in the 67th minute, the Bears took the lead. From 25 yards out, a Bears attacker was able to find the far corner of the net. Down with little more than 30 minutes left to play, the Eagles knew they had to step up.
“Towards the end of the game, when we were down 2-1, the pressure was on,” Mullins said. “We really wanted to make that extra shot for the tie.”
The tension was high when the game score remained 2-1 in the Bears’ favor for the next 20 minutes of the game, until Romero came to the rescue.
At the 89:21, Romero recovered a loose ball inside the six-yard box.
She capitalized on the opportunity and sent the ball into the goal for her second score of the game, and fifth of the season.
Sophomore midfielder Claudia Rowe, who had sent the initial ball into the box to set up Romero’s goal, earned the assist.
“I was so proud of our girls for tying up the score in the last minute. The win would’ve been nice, but a tie is better than a loss,” said sophomore Meredith Doherty.
Though Romero scored both Eagles goals this game, the match — and the entire season for this squad — has been a team effort.
“We came together as a team at the end of the game to tie it with 45 seconds left in regulation,” commented senior Lee Bachouros.
This was the first multi-goal game of Romero’s career. She is now second on the team with 13 total points this season, on five goals and three assists.
She is also tied with Anna Zambricki of Wash. U for the conference lead in goals, with five.
The Eagles dominated the two overtime periods. They took nine shots after regulation ended, compared to just two for Wash. U.
Of those nine shots, two were on goal. None of them, however, made it past the Wash. U goalie for scores.
The Eagles finished the game with a 20-12 edge in total shots, and a 8-4 edge in shots on goal over the Bears.
The squad is now undefeated in their last 14 UAA games, having gone 11-0-3 over that stretch, and their last 35 games overall. The Eagles are also 1-0-2 against ranked teams this season.
Next on the conference schedule for the Eagles is a home game against Case Western Reserve at 5 p.m. on Friday.
“We hope to play good soccer against Case Western and get a solid win against an opponent that has challenged us over the past few years,” Bachouros said.
Asst. Sports Editor Bennett Ostdiek contributed reporting.
— By Nicola Braginsky