UConn women's soccer takes down Central Connecticut
Published: Monday, September 2, 2013
Updated: Monday, September 2, 2013 23:09
Coming off of their first win of the season against Boston College, the UConn women’s soccer team got their second victory of the year on Sunday, defeating Central Connecticut State, 3-0, at Joseph J. Morrone Stadium.
In extreme humidity, UConn pressured the ball early, controlling the middle of the field and forcing Central to play the outside.
“Our theme this year is to fight and keep the speed, have them play at our pace, and they had problems adjusting to it,” head coach Len Tsantiris said.
UConn dominated the game early, having their way inside the box with Central defenders while keeping senior Australian goalkeeper Nikola Deiter on her toes.
The Huskies got on the board early as freshman forward Rachel Hill netted a goal from deep inside the box in the fourth minute. It was Hill’s team-leading third goal of the season.
“It’s definitely nice to finally start creating chemistry with the team,” Hill said. “They’re connecting with me a lot better now, and they do a really good job with it.”
Hill finished with one goal and five shots in 66 minutes.
The game was up-tempo with high level of intensity for UConn, as the Huskies had 10 shots in the first 10 minutes of the game. Central, meanwhile, managed only two shots, both from 20 feet outside the box.
“We created opportunities that could’ve been more goals, but three goals is good as a convincing win,” Tsantiris said. “The possession we had and moving the ball around was good.”
Junior midfielder Riley Houle scored the second goal of the game in the 18th minute for the Huskies unassisted, as she split two Central defenders and kicked it in-between the goaltenders legs to make it 2-0.
“This is a game where we come off Wisconsin, Stanford and BC, where we didn’t have as many chances, so it was nice today to have some opportunities to score goals,” Houle said.
Houle finished the game with four shots, one goal and one assist in 65 minutes.
UConn sophomore midfielder Brianna Butler set up Hill with a perfect pass leading to a breakaway chance that was stopped with a diving save by Deiter at the 34th minute.
Deiter, goalkeeper of the year in the Northeast Athletic Conference last season, made 11 saves in the game.
At the 38th minute, sophomore forward Stephanie Ribeiro took a shot from the right corner that went off a Central defender and into the net for an own goal, putting the Huskies up 3-0.
“It was an up-lifter because we see the rewards from pressuring the ball and pressuring up in the box and that’s what happens, somebody works really hard on the ball and creates confusion among the defenders and goalkeepers,” Tsantiris said. “It was a mistake because we pressured them.”
Any chance Central created was quickly muddled by UConn defenders, as the Huskies had their way with Central offensively and defensively.
Huskies’ goalkeeper Emily Armstrong made three saves in the first half, while UConn had 21 shots and a 3-0 lead going into the time break.
The second half tailored more of the same for the Huskies as they were able to control the ball and pile up even more scoring chances, finishing the game with 32 shots.
Hill had another breakaway chance in the final stanza, but shot wide off her left foot in the 57 th minute. The shot started a barrage of offensive chances for UConn in the second half, as the majority of the second stanza was played in UConn’s offensive zone.
UConn had five corner kicks in the first half to Central’s two and the Huskies finished the game with eight corner kick against Central’s three.
Central finished the game with 14 shots.
UConn was 10-1-0 all-time against Central going into the game, and the team furthered that margin to 11-1-0 with the 3-0 win.
The Huskies will face Maine next at 5 p.m. this Friday at Morrone Stadium.