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The Tufts Daily
Where you read it first | Tuesday, May 28, 2024

Women's Soccer | Jumbos fall prey to Lyons, remain scoreless in 2006 season

With a 1-0 win over Tufts on Tuesday, the Wheaton Lyons cleaned out a wound that had spent the past year festering.

A goal in the 76th minute by sophomore Angelamaria Viscomi broke a deadlocked match and exacted some revenge for the Jumbos' come-from-behind 5-2 win last November that ended the Lyons' seasons and sent the Jumbos to the NCAA Sectionals.

The loss dropped the Jumbos to 0-1-1 in the 2006 campaign, as the team has yet to put the ball in the back of a net. Tufts played to 110 minutes to a 0-0 tie against Colby on Kraft Field on Saturday.

"We have had our chances," coach Martha Whiting said. "They haven't gone in and they'll start to go in. I'm not worried about it."

The Tufts defense ran an offsides trap for the Lyons all game. Viscomi, the Lyons' leading scorer, trapped a cross in the box, and the Jumbo defense did not respond immediately, waiting for the anticipated offsides call. The call never came, and Viscomi took the extra time to trap the ball off her chest, and send it past senior tri-captain Annie Ross with 13 minutes remaining in the game.

"She volleyed it over my head while I came out to stop her," Ross said. "It was a good ball and she already has scored five goals this season. It was just one of those tough plays."

Though discouraging, the goal was not a death knell for the Jumbos.

"When it happens late in the game like that, it kind of saps your momentum a little bit," Whiting said. "When a team scores late like that, it's an uphill battle. But we never quit."

While the Lyons may have circled the game on their calendars, the Jumbos were not reading any deeper into the rematch.

"We really didn't even talk about last year's game at all," Whiting said. "[Last season] might be in back of our heads, but since it is a new season, we need to focus on what we're doing now. Honestly, after you lose a game, no matter who it is, you have a pit in your stomach."

The Jumbos had numerous chances throughout the game to get the ball past Wheaton's junior goalkeeper Elana Cockburn, but the shots did not fall. In the 19th minute, junior Martha Furtek's corner kick was cleared off the line as it curled toward the net, while junior Jessie Wagner's free kick a few minutes later was one of three Jumbo shots that hit the post.

"It's frustrating when you have chances that don't go in, but some games they just don't go your way," junior Joelle Emery said. "We definitely had our chances and they didn't fall for us. Hopefully they will start falling for us soon."

The Jumbos lost their top four point scorers from last season, including All-American Ariel Samuelson, and are relying on a younger nucleus to step up and score some goals.

"We have a lot of young people up front," Ross said. "It's going to take a few games to get comfortable playing with each other. Once we get one goal, we'll be fine. We just got to get that first one."

Game-time experience may also have played a role down the stretch. The Jumbos have been working together for scarcely two weeks, while the Wheaton's game against the Jumbos was already their fifth of the season.

"The whole season is a process and we're at the beginning," Whiting said. "We're still finding ourselves as a team and we need to keep doing what we're doing and keep getting better at what we're doing. You can't expect to be at top of your game after 13 days. We'll keep things the way they are now, and we'll keep working on fundamentals."

The Lyon are tied for third in this week's National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) New England Regional poll and moved to 4-1 with the win. The loss will most likely drop the Jumbos out of the top spot in the poll, but Whiting is not concerned.

"We just have to focus on what we do every game and hopefully [a dip in the polls] just pumps us up," Whiting said. "If we're not number one, in my opinion then there's nowhere to go but up."

On Saturday, the Jumbos will make the trek to Vermont to take on Middlebury in a tough conference game.

"Every NESCAC game is definitely a challenge," Emery said. "We'd obviously really like to come away with a win. After the past two weeks, we're finally ready for it to all come together and hopefully it'll happen this Saturday."