Overtime loss: women’s soccer still keeps spirits high

Sam TapperSports Writer

Despite their best efforts and a late second half lead, the Owls’ women’s soccer team suffered an overtime loss to the Southern New Hampshire University Penmen in an NE10 matchup at Jess Dow Field.

The Owls, who fell to 4-3-1 in the loss, were locked in a battle with the Penmen right from the get-go, as both teams saw practically no offense in the first half. The Owls were able to open the scoring late, thanks to a goal in the 81st minute by forward Johanna Wahlen, a senior native of Germany.

“We won the ball and it was played into Meg Kelley,” said Wahlen of the goal. “We played a quick one-two, so I got the ball again, and there was a lot of space, so I started running, and then I was able to kick it with my left foot in the right-upper corner.”

It looked as if Wahlen had gotten her team on the board in the first half, however the ball she put into the back of the net would be waved off due to a foul. The goal that counted was the second of the season for Wahlen, occurring in consecutive games.

The Owls had the lead with just eight minutes left to play in regulation, but it did not last long. Less than two minutes later, SNHU would tie the game on a goal from junior Allyson Patterson assisted by sophomore Sydney Carney to send it into overtime. In OT, SNHU won in the 99th minute thanks to a goal from senior Shae Roys, also assisted by Carney.

“I think that on both ends it was a battle. I think there were a lot of good things for us coming out of this game,” said captain and graduate student Mikaela Magee. “It ultimately ended in a loss, but I don’t think that’s something that we’re going to take too much to heart. We’re going to look at this game, we’re going to learn from it, we’re going to move forward and we’re going to get better from it.”

Magee was one of eight players to play at least 90 minutes during the game. Among that field was goalkeeper Allie Smith, also a graduate student. Despite taking the loss, Smith would have a strong outing in net, making six saves on 14 shots faced. Even though she was not perfect, her effort did not go unnoticed by head coach Adam Cohen.

“I thought she came up huge for us,” Cohen said. “Our team understands how to defend, and they know that starts with putting the work in and they’re always willing to do that, so, that’s typically why we defend really well.”

With the second loss of the season, the Owls remain in the middle of the pack in the NE10 standings, just under Assumption. Though the loss could potentially be tough to swallow, both Cohen and Magee are encouraging the rest of the team to keep their heads up, as the confidence level remains “very high.”

“It’s one game,” said Cohen. “Whether you win a game, or whether you lose a game — it’s one game. So, either way, you’re going to move forward and learn from it and grow and get better, and that’s what we’ll do whether we win or lose.”

The matchup with the Penmen was the Owls’ first home loss of the season. Up next, the Owls will host Queens College, a non-conference opponent followed by a five-game road trip. They will then return home again to host the University of New Haven.

“I think it’s just to kind of have a short-term memory on it,” said Magee. “You look at the things you did well, you look at the things you did bad, and you use that, and you move forward. I think that in this conference we have such a short turnaround, so moving forward from this is really important.”

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