The BU women’s soccer team fell to the Marquette Golden Eagles, 1-0, at Nickerson Field on Friday night. After a brief streak of tied games, the Terriers (1-5-2) suffered their second home loss of the season.
The Terriers applied heavy offensive pressure from the start, looking for holes in the Golden Eagles’ (7-1-0) defense to net a goal. At the 22-minute mark, Marquette scored the game-winning goal.
Nonetheless, the Terriers persisted. For the ensuing 70 minutes of the game, the Terriers amassed a whopping 19 more shots, totaling 25 for the game. Furthermore, the team stifled the Golden Eagles’ offense by not permitting any shots for the remainder of the game.
“I thought our performance was very complete,” Terriers head coach Nancy Feldman said. “We’re moving in the right direction. Our commitment to good defending was there from the forwards all the way to the goalkeeper.”
Statistically, the Terriers outperformed Marquette in shots, 25-1, and in corners, 11-0. Such offensive aggression not only led to numerous shots, but a near goal for the Terriers midway through the second half by senior midfielder Erin Neville.
“We showed a lot of poise and confidence with the ball while being aggressive,” Feldman said.
Still, despite the glaringly uneven statistics, a single misstep by the Terriers early on cost them the victory. Feldman recognized that the team needs to never let their guard down while doggedly pursuing the ball and defending their goal.
“We have to be better in the final pieces, the critical areas,” Feldman said. “We have to be really clean and good … both offensively and defensively. There are many checks in the plus column, but we have to be solid in those final pieces.”
Soon after the close loss to Marquette came a more serious one to crosstown rival Boston College on the road. The Eagles (5-3-0) defeated the Terriers, 3-0, Sunday afternoon on their home field.
The Terriers opened the game composed, and controlling the aggression of the Eagles’ offense. Yet, by the 18th minute of the game, the Eagles’ Gianna Mitchell scored off of a corner kick for BC’s first goal.
Not too long after, BU nearly leveled the score with a close shot that soared right above the crossbar. The Terriers faltered to equalize the score before the break.
Opening the second half, the Eagles came out strong, netting a goal at the 49-minute mark on a penalty kick. Frantically looking to climb their way back, the Terriers relentlessly attacked the BC goal with eight shots.
“We had plenty of time to prepare, [but] the players had fatigue,” Feldman said. “There were one or two areas we could’ve attacked them at where they were more susceptible … a couple of things we want to take away from their attack and how we want to defend. It’s the players’ rest that is challenging.”
Fatigue certainly played a large role during the game as the Terriers could not convert despite a ceaseless offensive onslaught in the second half. Their inability to score grew frustrating, which led to BC’s third goal midway through the second half.
In response, BU immediately charged forward, looking to provide a brief respite to BC’s dominance. The Terriers applied more offensive pressure by bringing their defensive unit forward to score.
“There is frustration,” Feldman said. “When you put yourself in a position to score goals and limit the other team and when you don’t get a result … we’re not happy about it.”
The Terriers endured two losses over the weekend, but do show signs of promise. A recurring theme, after each goal by its opponents, BU is quick to respond with crisp shots of their own. The team’s ability to react swiftly underscores their unwavering determination to win.
“There are a lot of positives to take away,” Feldman said. “We’re going to move forward and get better at finishing.”