Sept. 29, 2013
VILLANOVA, Pa. - In a physical game where both sides had plenty of offensive chances in the second half, Marquette's goal in the 13th minute would serve as the lone score of the day as the Golden Eagles posted a 1-0 victory over Villanova at West Campus Soccer Complex on Sunday afternoon.
Villanova outshot Marquette by a 10-7 margin in the second half and had a chance to gain the equalizer when awarded a penalty kick in the 85th minute, but a save by Amanda Engel held the Golden Eagle lead and would sustain for the victory. With the loss, the Wildcats fell to 4-5-2 overall and 1-1 in the BIG EAST while Marquette improved to 9-3-0 overall and 2-0 in the conference.
Marquette held the early advantage in the opening minutes but spectacular play by the Villanova defense anchored by senior goalkeeper Jami Kranich (Hamden, Conn.), who matched a career-high with nine saves, kept the Golden Eagles at bay. The visitors found themselves with luck on their side at the 13:29 mark when Mady Vicker took a shot from 20 yards out and hit the high far post for the score and the 1-0 lead.
Kranich, with the help from the defensive backs of Kathryn Rayner (Needham, Mass.), Taylor Houck (Chalfont, Pa.), Callie Duliba (Kitnersville, Pa.) and Rhea Barghash (Bridgewater, N.J.), stifled the Marquette attack for the remainder of the half, fighting off a 7-2 advantage in shots. At intermission, Kranich had collected four of her nine saves on the afternoon.
Following halftime which honored the 10th Anniversary of the 2003 Villanova Women's Soccer team, the Wildcats came out fighting and saw shots from Reanna Marino (Massapequa, N.Y.) and Hayley Wilson (Leonardtown, Md.) in the first 10 minutes of action. Villanova continued to apply pressure on the Marquette defense, but found their shots just missing the net or stopped by Marquette's Engel.
In the 84th minute, Villanova had another opportunity during a scramble inside the 18 as Victoria Gersh (Silver Spring, Md.) tried to get a foot on the ball for the tap in, but the attempt was blocked by the MU defense. Just over a minute later, the Wildcats were awarded a penalty kick for a take-down inside the box but Emily Damstrom's (Short Hills, N.J.) shot was saved by Engel.
Villanova's last chance on goal came from Duliba but the shot was saved once again in the 85th minute.
The contest was without a doubt the most physical Villanova had faced all year with a total of 20 fouls and five yellow cards awarded during the match.
Villanova will have the chance to rebound in the conference standings when they travel to Xavier and DePaul next week on Thursday, Oct. 3rd and Sunday, Oct. 6th. Game times are slated for 6:30pm and 2pm CT, respectively.