The UConn women’s soccer team struggled on both ends of the ball on Sunday, as they were unable to put many quality shots on goal or prevent the same defensively.
“We have all the pieces, and when you have a really young team, you’re going to have inconsistent moments,” head coach Margaret Rodriguez said. “I think that’s what you saw here today, just a little inconsistent moment, and trying to solve it in the run of play is tough for a young team.”
UConn had an immediate scoring opportunity when in the sixth minute an excellent cross set up Sophia Danyko-Kulchycky for a header right in front of the net, but the shot bounced right into the keeper’s hands. However, it would be 20 minutes until their next shot attempt, a Cara Jordan strike that was blocked, one of only five the entire first half.
“I think we started off well,” Rodriguez said. “I think we had a couple opportunities and we didn’t put it away, and it was almost like we got a little too comfortable with that, and I think we got caught.”
The Crimson took the lead on the 30th minute after Gabby DelPico fired one right into the bottom left corner of the net from just outside the top of the box. The score remained 1-0 for the rest of the half, but it didn’t take long for Harvard to double their lead. In the 55th minute, they finally capitalized on the immense offensive pressure they were generating, scoring on an essentially empty net after a Randi Palacios save fell right at a Harvard player’s feet.
The Huskies answered fast, taking just over a minute to shrink the deficit back to one score. The ball came loose in front of the Harvard net, Sofia Leone passed it back to Jessica Mazo who finished the job. For Mazo, a freshman, it was the first goal of her colligate career.
However, that was all of the scoring they would get, and after Harvard pushed the lead back to two goals in the 73rd minute.
“Jessica’s goal was great, and I thought that was gonna kind of be our momentum boost and our little confidence boost, and we just kind of got flat after it again,” Rodriguez said. “It was disappointing.”
The Huskies will be back in action on Saturday, Sept. 21 when they travel to Massachusetts to take on the UMass Lowell River Hawks.
Jorge Eckardt is a staff writer for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at Jorge.firstname.lastname@example.org.