The UR women’s soccer team has certainly made amends for a slow start to their season. After going 3-3 in their first six games, the ‘Jackets have gone 6-0-2, including a win against University Athletic Association rival Emory University, who was most recently ranked 11th in Division III. The women have allowed only one goal in the past eight games and are at the top of the UAA with a 9-3-2 record.

This past weekend, the ‘Jackets kept rolling with a game against Wilkes University thanks to four goals in the first half and solid defensive play. Sophomore forward Erin Carballo was the offensive spark, scoring two goals in two shots for the ‘Jackets. Also scoring were freshman forwards Kirsten Ross and Bridgette Varin.

Ten minutes in, it was Varin putting the ball past Wilkes goalie Jessica Berkey to give the ‘Jackets a 1-0 lead. Varin was able to find net on the unassisted goal when she came up with the ball just outside of the penalty box. It was Varin’s fourth goal of the season.

Carballo put the ‘Jackets up 2-0 four minutes later when she volleyed in a cross from sophomore defender Lindsey Rood. Six minutes later it was Carballo again. This time, senior midfielder Ali Streeter slid the ball ahead for Carballo, who was able to chip the ball over the head of Berkey.

Finishing off the scoring was Ross in the 35th minute of play, when she toe-poked the ball past Wilkes’s replacement goalie Liz Pauly. The goal was Ross’ first of the season.

UR held a 13-3 advantage over Wilkes in shots and totaled seven corner kicks, all of which came in the first half. Senior goalkeeper Molly Leitch played the first 35 minutes in net for the ‘Jackets and didn’t have to make a save. After Ross scored, senior goalie Kate Levy took over and made two saves.

For Wilkes, Berkey made three saves, while Pauly had five stops.

Against Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute on Tuesday, it was a solid defensive effort and a strong first half that allowed UR to prevail 2-0 over the Red Hawks. The loss was the seventh in a row for RPI, who fell to 6-10-1.

The scoring started halfway through the first, when the ‘Jackets gained control of a ball at midfield and passed it ahead to Varin, who dribbled up the field and fed the ball to the left side. Junior midfielder Laura Bojko ran onto the pass, beating Red Hawk goalie Meghan White to the ball and sliding the ball into the net in the 21st minute. The goal was Bojko’s second game winner on the season.

Just over 15 minutes later, UR attacked again. This time it was off the corner kick.

Senior midfielder Laura Morrison put the ball into the box, but it was headed wide by an RPI defender for another corner. On the ensuing kick, Morrison played the ball to the back post of the goal, where Ross’s head connected with the ball to give the ‘Jackets a 2-0 lead.

Leitch started the game in net for the ‘Jackets and played for the first 45 minutes, not having to make a save.

Levy took over in the second half, making one crucial save right after halftime when a cross found the head of RPI’s Sara Briggs, who put the ball toward the lower right hand corner of the goal. Levy scrambled across the goal to knock the ball away from the goal, giving the Red Hawks a corner kick.

The resulting corner hit the crossbar and was then cleared by the ‘Jackets.

RPI also switched keepers at the half. After making two saves in the first half and giving up two goals, White was replaced by Amanda Brophy, who made three saves for the Red Hawks.

The ‘Jackets sustained offensive pressure throughout the match, amounting seven shots in each half.

Senior Amy Thompson, part of the staunch UR defense that has been all but impenetrable in the past nine games, had three shots. The Yellowjackets also held a 9-1 advantage in corner kicks.

The game was the final regular season home game for seniors Levy, Leitch, Morrison, midfielder Tammy Brewster, Streeter, Thompson, defender Darby Grant and defender Ashley Van Vechten. The ‘Jackets return to UAA play on Friday, when they take on 10th-ranked Washington University in St. Louis.

On Sunday, the ‘Jackets take on University of Chicago and then end their season with a trip to Case Western Reserve University the following Saturday.

Hilfinger is a member of the class of 2010.



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