Women's Soccer | Jumbos defeat Suffolk University in rout, 4−0
Squad seeks first NESCAC victory against Conn. College this weekend
Published: Friday, October 5, 2012
Updated: Friday, October 5, 2012 02:10
After going exactly three weeks without a victory, the women’s soccer team finally earned its second win of the year, trouncing Suffolk University 4−0, at Kraft Field.
The Jumbos scored early and often Wednesday, putting the pressure on the Rams from the opening whistle. It took only 47 seconds for the Jumbos to find their first tally, as junior striker Anya Kaufmann took a pass from freshman striker Allie Weiller in the box and drilled a shot towards the lower−left corner. The ball skimmed off the outstretched fingertips of Rams sophomore goalkeeper Melissa Brouillette and into the back of the net.
In a season that has been plagued by slow starts, the Jumbos turned the table on Wednesday, and continued to press offensively following the opening goal. Tufts capitalized on a scoring opportunity again in the 21st minute, when junior defender Bizzy Lincoln lofted a corner kick into the middle of the box. Kaufmann managed to get her head on the end of it, directing the ball into the back of the net for her second goal of the game.
“Obviously it’s much easier to get good chances on goal when we have possession,” senior tri−captain midfielder Rachel Aronchick said. “We also had a lot of different people step up today all over the field. We had two goals off of headers, a goal from a defender, and significant impact from some freshmen. Work ethic is contagious. Once someone on the team steps up their work rate, the rest of the team steps up to match it.”
The Jumbos put the game away in the 67th minute, when junior midfielder Blair Brady found herself in the right place at the right time. Brouillette turned away a shot from sophomore midfielder Nikki Blank, but directed it to the foot of Brady. She calmly placed it in the back of the net for her first career goal, extending the lead to an insurmountable 3−0.
Weiller added the fourth goal late in a game, heading in a cross from Brady.
For a team that had won only one game prior to playing Suffolk — a 1−0 overtime affair against MIT on Sept. 12 — Wednesday’s performance was an important one. Tufts dominated the contest in every single statistical category, controlling the time of possession while topping Suffolk in shots, 26−4, and corner kick attempts, 10−1.
Suffolk may have been a non−conference foe with a subpar 3−6 record, but for a team that had gone so long without the taste of victory, the win meant a lot for the young Jumbos squad.
“I think this win will definitely give us confidence going forward,” Brady said. “Scoring four goals definitely shows us that we have the ability to put the ball in the back of the net.”
With the victory, Tufts improved to 2−5−2 overall on the year. The Jumbos will return to action on Saturday when they travel to Connecticut College, still seeking their first win against a NESCAC opponent this year.
“Obviously the goal of any game is to play well and come out on top, but at this point in the season, our remaining NESCAC games are huge,” Aronchick said. “We have to come through with wins in our game against Conn and in the NESCAC games following so that we can secure our spot in the NESCAC tournament at the end of the season.”
Saturday’s affair presents quite a few fascinating storylines. Both teams have had their fair share of struggles this year, and will be looking for their first conference win on Saturday. Both are coming off a victory, and will be looking to win two straight for the first time all year. For one team, this game may provide much−needed momentum heading into the season’s final stretch. But for the other, this game may serve as a bitter reminder of just how mediocre this season has been.
“I think we’ll approach Saturday’s game like the other NESCAC teams we’ve played,” Brady said. “We need to play hard for 90 minutes. If we do that, the result will be positive.”