Wearing their away blue uniforms at home, the UConn women’s soccer team (9-2) defeated Tulsa (4-6-1) 4-2 in a game at Morrone Stadium. It was the conference opener for both teams and the Huskies eighth home game of the season. The offense came from very familiar faces.
Redshirt senior Stephanie Ribeiro had two goals with two assists of the night. Her first goal came in the 22nd minute on a through ball from senior midfielder Maddie Damm. It was the Huskies second goal of the game and Ribeiro’s ninth on the year.
Then, with Tulsa applying some pressure, including nearly tying the game up, Ribeiro put the Hurricanes away for good. In the 77nd minute she gained possession not far past the mid line, and went on the attack; once when Tulsa keeper Courtney McKeon came out to challenge, she slid it on by for her 10th goal of the season.
The other two goals came from the efforts of senior forward Rachel Hill, with the assists coming from her partner in crime Ribeiro. Their first goal came off a Tulsa foul. While the guilty Hurricane defender argued with the official, Ribeiro quickly set the ball and passed it to Hill who buried it only 10 minutes in. Hill’s second goal came from another nice pass.
Freshman Alexa Casamiro forced a turnover near the UConn bench and found Ribeiro in the middle of the field. With a numbers advantage, Ribeiro drew the Hurricane defender and rolled a nice pass ahead to an open Hill who had no problem burying it.
“They’re good and mature players, they find the right opportunities and they are capable of finishing. That’s their quality as players, we’re winning games because they can finish,” said head coach Len Tsantiris
Their success against Tulsa was no surprise. Hill and Ribeiro have been utterly dominant this season. The Huskies have been very dependent on their production as UConn has yet to find consistent offensive production from other players. However, with a 9-2 record it doesn’t appear they need it.
With her two goals tonight Hill moved into a tie for third on the women’s soccer all-time scoring list. She now has 20 points in the season, with eight goals and four assists.
Ribeiro has been even more dominant this fall, her six points tonight elevate her to 27 points on the season. She has 10 goals and seven assists in the 2016 season.
With American Athletic Conference play underway, it might have been an extra motivating factor for the duo.
“Once conference starts, we all know it’s a difference season and it just picks you up, makes you go that much harder,” Hill said.
They will continue conference action when they host the Memphis Tigers Sunday afternoon.
Matt Barresi is a campus correspondent for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.