Knights exit Nike Invitational without victory
The Rutgers women’s soccer team suffered its first setback of the season before salvaging the weekend in the Virginia Nike Soccer Classic.
The Scarlet Knights took an undefeated record into their matchup against No. 5 Virginia, looking to make a early-season statement with a potential upset.
The Cavaliers had other ideas and defeated the Knights, 6-0. It was the most goals Rutgers (4-1-1) has allowed since the last time both teams met in the second round of last year’s NCAA Tournament.
“I was really proud of the effort shown, despite the lopsided results,” said head coach Glenn Crooks. “We really grew as a team.”
Virginia (6-0) scored four goals in the second half to put the game out of reach, including two from forward Danielle Colaprico in the first 15 minutes of the second period.
Midfielder Morgan Brian scored first for the Cavaliers in the 30th minute on a header. Brian played for the U.S. National team this year.
The goal broke senior goaltender Jessica Janosz’s scoreless streak that began at the start of the season. Janosz’s streak was the second-longest in school history, spanning four games and 376 minutes.
Rutgers got its chance for redemption Sunday against William & Mary.
With Virginia outshooting the Knights on Friday, 19-2, Rutgers upped the intensity offensively against William & Mary and outshot the Tribe, 17-7. The aggressive style resulted in a 1-1 draw.
The Knights took a 1-0 lead into the second half, but William & Mary’s (2-1-2) Emory Camper put a shot from 15 yards out past Janosz to even the game in the 46th minute.
Both teams traded scoring chances late in regulation, including a pair by the Knights in the 88th minute. Tribe goalkeeper Caroline Casey stopped the first, and Rutgers’ ensuing corner kick led to a shot that ricocheted off of the crossbar.
The teams would remain deadlocked the rest of the way, which included two overtime periods, despite Rutgers’ the advantage in shots on goal.
“I felt that we were the better side, but we just couldn’t quite finish at the end,” Crooks said.
Senior forward Maria Gerew scored her first goal of the season off an assist from senior defender Tricia DiPaolo in the 38th minute to give Rutgers a 1-0 lead.
The Knights next face Bryant on Friday at Yurcak Field in the first of two weekend contests.
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