It was an emotional rollercoaster this past weekend for the women’s soccer team who battled through two draining University Athletic Association games. The Yellowjackets picked up a key win against national power Emory University on Sunday after falling to Carnegie Mellon University in double overtime on Oct. 17.

On Sunday the Yellowjackets came out on top of their games, while Emory was a bit off. “From the start, we could sense that Emory was playing less to win and more not to lose,” Head Coach Terry Gurnett said.

Playing not to lose meant tentative play from the normally agressive Emory. The Eagles were only able to muster up three shots during the course of the game while UR’s offense was sparked by 21 shots.

The Yellowjackets dominated tempo and posession from the game’s onset. UR fired nine shots in the first half but could only get two on goal, which were stopped by Emory keeper Amy Franciscovich. The second half had more of the same. UR outshot Emory 12-2 in the second period and finally snuck one by Franciscovich in the 79th minute of play.

Senior centerback Jenica Schmidt headed in the game winning tally off of a great ball across the box from junior midfielder Karen Forsythe. Forsythe’s corner kick resulted from an offensive surge in the Emory end – a surge which had been missing in the games prior to the Emory contest.

“We fought hard all over the field,” Gurnett said. “I’m really proud of the great effort and leadership throughout the entire game.”

The Yellowjackets held on to their 1-0 advantage and sent the number 15 ranked Eagles home with their second UAA loss of the season. Gurnett highlighted the play of junior centerback Pietrina Micoli in addition to that of Forsythe and Schmidt.

“This was definitely our best game of the year. We battled hard all over the field and more importantly we found a way to win,” Gurnett said. “We’ve played well enough to win every game this fall, we just haven’t found out how to do it. We figured it out on Sunday.”

The Yellowjackets have had some offensive struggles of late, which Gurnett attributes to adjustment to a new three forward offensive scheme. A difficult scheme consisting of one forward flanking senior forward Alison Collins on both sides of the field.

“Right now the freshman [the flanking forwards] are overcompensating too much, by hanging back. Once they get used to the system and start pushing forward we’ll see some more offense, taking pressure off of Ali,” Gurnett said.

The lack of offense was evident in the Yellowjackets 1-0 loss to a solid Carnegie Mellon team on Friday night.

UR matched Carnegie Mellon and only managed to generate two shots on goal.

“We started off flat, and got stronger as the game went on,” Gurnett said. “In the second overtime we really pushed hard and turned it on.”

UR put three shots on goal in the second overtime – one more than they had on goal during the rest of the game. However, the UR offense was diffused by the great play of Carnegie Mellon keeper, Megan Monroe.

“Poor game management and a defensive miscue cost us the game,” Gurnett said.

UR had the ball in the Carnegie Mellon end with 25 seconds left, there should have been no way the Tartans could get a shot let alone a goal against UR.

It all started when Monroe an amazing save off of a one-timer from freshman forward Emily Urbanczyk. Monroe then made a perfect downfield pass as UR seemed to freeze in shock from the save. Monroe’s pass was chipped further downfield by Carnegie Mellon back Margaret Beck and met by the head of Tartan forward Ericka Anderson for the game winner. Anderson’s header floated over the head of UR’s senior goalkeeper Sarah Malecki who was just caught out of place.

“Except for the last 10 seconds I thought we played a good game,” Gurnett said. “I give credit to Carnegie, they never gave up.”

Despite the loss, UR was excited to get out and play and according to Gurnett, the team took a step forward.

“We knew we had to play extremely well to take on a quality program like Emory. We did that, and from here we have to take it one game at a time.”

Late Wednesday evening, UR played to a 1-1 draw with local rival Nazareth College. Nazareth has been ranked nationally for most of the year and though the Yellowjackets did not earn the win, a draw is a respectable result. The UR goal came late in the second half courtesy a strike from Urbanczyk. Sophomore goalkeeper Adrianne Hulchanski recorded the draw in 110 minutes of work.

Up next UR will face off against Rochester Polytechnic Institute on Oct. 28. The RPI game will mark the final regular season home game for the Yellowjackets.

Fitzsimmons can be reached at afitzsimmons@campustimes.org.



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