No columnist enjoys writing about losses (despite what you may think about John and SU football...). It’s especially disheartening when the team you’re covering had been doing very well before taking a downward turn. The Syracuse Orange women’s soccer team still has six games left on the schedule, and each of them is as important as the next if they want to reach the postseason for the first time since 2001.
On Sunday afternoon, Syracuse was blanked by Duke, 4-0; their third-straight opponent in the final leg of their three-game road trip. In the first half, the Orange held the 10th-ranked Blue Devils to one goal, a promising start. Junior goalkeeper had four of her six saves to lead the defensive effort. The lone goal was scored by senior midfielder Toni Payne off of a cross in by junior midfielder Imani Dorsey in the sixth minute.
Duke poured it on in the second half, scoring three goals within a span of thirty minutes of play. Payne netted her second of the game in the 50th minute, pounding the ball into the bottom right corner from 18 yards out. Freshman midfielder Ella Stevens, who had an assist credited on the previous goal, shot a laser from 18 yards out into the bottom right corner in the 60th minute. Ten minutes later, Stevens tapped in her second goal of the game off of a ricochet from junior midfielder Ashton Miller.
Syracuse was barely able to muster any offensive scoring opportunities. They produced none in the first 45 minutes and only two in the second half. Unfortunately, it’s very difficult to find the back of the net with minimal opportunities.
Players of the Match
- Ella Stevens, Duke, Freshman, midfielder: 5 shots, 3 shots-on-goal, 2 goals, 1 assist
- Toni Payne, Duke, Senior, midfielder: 2 shots, 2 shots-on-goal, 2 goals
- Christina Gibbons, Duke, Senior, defender: 1 shot, 1 shot-on-goal, 2 assists
The Orange (7-4-2, 0-3-1) will hope to turn the tide for the better when Virginia Tech (8-4-1, 0-3-1 ACC) comes to town this Thursday. It’s “Pink Day” at SU Soccer Stadium, where the team will wear pink jerseys to support Breast Cancer Awareness month. Kickoff is slated for 7 p.m. ET, so if you’re in the area, come out and support these ladies!