Typically, when a team manages to outshoot their opponent 25-1 the results are usually favorable. However, this was not the case for the Boston University women’s soccer team last Friday night as they dropped a heartbreaker of a match to Marquette University, despite winning the shot battle by a staggering margin.
Although they landed 13 shots in the first 45 minutes before taking another 12 shots in the final half, the Terriers were unable to get one shot to fall against the Golden Eagles (7-1). Frustratingly enough, the one shot that Marquette did manage to land on goal, a one-timer by Kylie Sprecher at 21:06, eluded the reach of senior goalkeeper Hannah Ciolek.
“We defended very well,” said BU head coach Nancy Feldman. “The more you can defend well up the field and win the territory. You’re putting a lot more pressure on them, creating some transition and turnovers in the forward half and middle-third of the field. That can often lead to a more sustained attack, and that is what we got against Marquette.”
The Terriers suffered a similar fate on Sunday when they traveled to face Boston College. BU outshot the Eagles (5-3) by a 12-10 margin, including ripping eight shots in the second half of the game in comparison with BC’s four. The Terriers even equaled the Eagles in corner kicks, 4-4.
However, the end result did not favor BU. Three of the Eagles 10 shots sailed past freshman goalkeeper Amanda Fay placing the Terriers in a 3-0 hole that they could not recover from.
“We have to just get sharper and finer in the last moment,” Feldman said. “The last pass — the timing of it, the quality of it, including our service on restarts. [We need] better quality on our runs to separate and to get penetration opportunities from the top of the box.”
BU has garnered one goal in their past four games, a drought that American (1-7 Patriot League 0-1) can sympathize with. The Eagles have been shut out in each of their last five games, a troublesome losing streak that has pitted them towards the bottom of the Patriot League standings.
After losing to Virginia Commonwealth University and Longwood University by a combined score of 7-0, American found themselves in brutal situations in each of the last three games. Each contest has concluded with a 1-0 result, including a gut-wrenching double-overtime loss to the University of Vermont on Sunday.
On Saturday, the Terriers will look to flip the script on Brown and place the onus on her to make game-saving stops. Expect midfielders Anna Heilferty and Jesse Shreck to command the majority of the defensive attention from the American defense in the matchup.
Against BC, Heilferty neared her second goal of the season with two shots, one of which was placed on net. She added three shots in the loss to Marquette.
Shreck has suffered a bit of a dry spell since scoring her lone goal of the season in a win over Northeastern University on Aug. 24, placing just one shot on net in the five games since. She will look to reverse this trend against the Eagles.
Now, the Terriers (1-5-2) seek to return to their winning ways this Saturday night at Nickerson Field against American University.
In order to do well, BU needs to improve on finishing the opportunities that present themselves, Feldman added.
“[We need to be] better with our combinations, our individual efforts to create a shot, finding a small window,” she said. “It is really [the] last fine detail of finishing the moments.”