In this year's edition of the "Kick for a Cure" game, the Syracuse Orange (5-10-1, 1-6-0 ACC) proved that they still have some juice left in the tank. Forgive me, but it was a little harder to believe that they had anything after the previous three games, in which they had several missed opportunities.
North Carolina State (4-11-0, 0-6-0 ACC) came in to the contest with a six-game losing streak of their own. Four of them had been shutouts. The Wolf Pack started the season 3-2, a record that had potential to lead to a successful season. Alas, the team proceeded to lose the last nine of 10 games, including Sunday's. Redshirt sophomore forward Jackie Stengel has five of State's 12 goals as well as an assist. She's followed by Redshirt junior forward Alexa Allen with three goals on the season and one assist. Freshman goalkeeper Sydney Wootten has seen the most action on the pitch out of the Pack's two goalies, with 16 goals allowed and 49 saves for a .754 save percentage and 1.82 goals-against average. Her compatriot, Redshirt Junior Mackenzie Stelljes has allowed 11 goals and saved 32 for a .744 save percentage and a 1.63 goals-against average.
Syracuse came out firing on all cylinders, wasting no time in scoring their first goal of the game 50 seconds into the contest. Junior midfielder Emma Firenze collected sophomore forward Eva Gordon's wide rebound and finished the shot for the quick 1-0 lead. Then, in the 21st minute, junior forward Stephanie Skilton scored from the left side of the box. Coming out of the halftime break, Gordon scored a rebound goal in the 47th minute increasing the Orange's lead to 3-0.
Third-year head coach Tim Santoro's team just couldn't get anything going the entire game. NC State was outshot 14-4 and 8-3 in shots on-goal. They have now lost seven games in-a-row and the road doesn't get any easier with match-ups with No. 6 Clemson and No. 2 Virginia still left on the schedule.
For Syracuse, three games remain with a shot at finishing the season, realistically, with seven wins.
- Eva Gordon: 2 shots, 1 goal, 1 assist
- Emma Firenze and Stephanie Skilton: 1 shot, 1 goal each
- Courtney Brosnan: 3 saves, third clean sheet of the season
Miami (5-9-0, 2-5-0 ACC) comes to town this Thursday evening. The Orange will look to get their second-straight win in hopes of closing out the season on a strong note. Go help support these ladies!
If you can't get to the S.U. Soccer Stadium, the game will be televised on your regional ACC Sports Network affiliate and streamed through ESPN3.