Women's soccer team fails to score, extends losing streak to four
Published: Tuesday, September 4, 2012
Updated: Monday, November 5, 2012 20:11
Mental mistakes and missed opportunities on offense has been the theme this season for the women’s soccer team.
The Bulls (1-4-1) looked to change that luck during the weekend set of games, starting on the road against Bucknell (2-2) and finishing off with a Senior Night matchup with Niagara (1-2).
Things stayed the same this weekend as Bucknell and Niagara got the better of the Bulls, holding Buffalo scoreless in both games. The Bisons shut out the Bulls, 1-0, and the Purple Eagles squeaked by in a 1-0 double overtime victory.
“Unfortunately it has been the story of our season so far,” said head coach Michael Thomas. “We are playing some very good soccer. We need to execute a little more. We need to get a bounce to go our way and we’ll be able to have a pretty good chance.”
Buffalo struggled to find its offense against Bucknell and was outshot 16-5. Freshman midfielder Kassidy Kidd had the Bulls only shot on goal of the game.
“We had our chances but we must focus on both sides of the ball and on the little things to improve,” Thomas said.
Bucknell’s aggressive defense challenged the Bulls from the start. Buffalo’s leading scorers, senior forward Katie Kerr and her sophomore counterpart Katie Roberts, were held to one shot.
At the 57-minute mark, Bucknell’s junior forward Chelsey Garkowski fired a shot off the crossbar and a Buffalo defender blocked the rebound before the ball rolled out of play. On the ensuing corner kick, Bucknell’s sophomore defender Courtney Nelson was able to convert her team’s only goal.
“We let a runner come near post untouched and she punished us for it,” Thomas said.
Buffalo had more opportunities against Niagara and looked as if it was going to pull off a victory against its Big Four rival.
The Purple Eagles had other ideas as they came right down the field in the 119th minute and scored the game-winning golden goal. Forward Kayla Picano sent a ball right up the middle of the field to fellow forward Jamie Raepple, as her goal stunned the Bulls.
The game was very tight in the first half with not too many scoring chances presenting themselves. The shot by sophomore midfielder Megan Giesen at the 44th minute nearly found the back of the net before it was knocked away by Niagara goalkeeper Claire Feiertag.
In the second half, the Buffalo offense started to find space behind the Niagara defense and gave itself a few nice scoring chances. Despite the breakaways, free kicks and numerous corner kicks, the Bulls were not able to find the net.
In the second overtime, the Bulls had yet another scoring opportunity off a 115th minute free kick. Buffalo failed to convert again and Niagara scored soon after.
Buffalo outshot the Eagles, 17-11, and had five corners compared to Niagara’s two.
“I don’t think anybody thought the results were going to fall this way early in the season,” Thomas said. “It really comes down to finishing in the red zone, to steal a football term. It just comes down to being able to finish chances in the big moments.”
After a thrilling 12-4-4 season last year, the Bulls have started off with a disappointing 1-4-1 and are winless in their last four games. Buffalo returned 10 starters from last season’s team and will be leaning on experience this year.
“One of the things they bring is they bring some consistency,” Thomas said. “We’re in a tough time right now and they’ve seen some tough times before. They know that the way to get through those is to work around them.”
Seven players were honored before the start of the game as part of the annual senior night at UB Stadium: defenders Shannon Algoe, Shannon Fisher and Angela Nicholas, midfielders Taylor Thompson and Carolyn McNamara and forwards Katie Kerr and Stephanie Velez.
“It was great to honor the seniors at the beginning of the game,” Thomas said. “I think that when you talk about this team what they’ve been off the field, just fantastic students, fantastic members of the community and fantastic representatives of the university.”
The Bulls will work on finishing games as they prepare for a crucial four game stretch on the road, starting with a tournament at Niagara University.
The first game of the tournament will be against Robert Morris (0-5-1) on Sept. 14 at 4 p.m.