Women's soccer has up and down weekend
Published: Sunday, September 30, 2012
Updated: Friday, August 23, 2013 16:08
A critical weekend of conference games for the UConn women’s soccer team started with promise on Friday night but ended in disappointment on Sunday afternoon. It was a tale of two very different games for UConn, who won a thriller against Depaul before squandering several opportunities against Notre Dame. With the split, UConn’s conference records currently stands at 3-3., while they are 7-5-1 overall.
On Friday night at Joseph Morrone Stadium in Storrs, the Huskies won a 3-2 thriller against Depaul when Linda Ruutu sniped the game-winning goal on a penalty kick from thirty yards out in the 84th minute. Ruutu, a senior midfielder from Finland, also contributed an assist to freshmen Sam McGuire. The Huskies also got a goal from freshmen forward Stephanie Riberio.
The offensive contributions by freshmen has been a theme for the Huskies all season long, as the thirteen rookies have made their presence felt all season long. Redshirt freshmen Andrea Plucenik is third on the team in goals with five goals and eleven assists, while Samantha McGuire and Stephanie Riberio are tied with Ruutu for second on the team with nine points apiece.
The Huskies rode the momentum from Friday night’s victory into Sunday afternoon’s contest with red-hot Notre Dame, who is one of three teams atop the Big East Conference with an undefeated record of 5-0-0 (Georgetown and Marquette). UConn completely dominated the Fighting Irish, especially in the first half, and had several staggering scoring opporturties. They were left scratching their heads after Danielle Schulmann, who leads the conference in points (25), goals (9), and assists (7), beat the Notre Dame defense only to hit the right goalpost. Only a few minutes later, Ruutu also hit the crossbar on a shot from the middle of the box.
We missed two open, very good opportunities that normally those two kids, Linda (Ruutu) and Danielle (Schulmann) score,” said 32nd year head coach Len Tsiantiris. “If we get something out of that, we change the whole game. We get two goals and the game is ours.”
The missed opportunities quickly caught up to the Huskies as Notre Dame would score four unanswered to pick up the road win, although Tsiantiris said that it was one of the most impressive efforts that he has seen from his team against the Fighting Irish throughout his storied tenure.
“Bottom line, we’ve never had that dominance against Notre Dame in all the years I’ve been here,” said Tsiantiris.
With the split, the Huskies find themselves right in the thick of the Big East mix as they head down the final stretch of the season. They are currently third in the Big East American Division with nine points, and will have an opportunity next weekend to make up some ground when they host USF and Marquette in a pair of conference matchups.