Redshirt freshman Stephanie Soma’s goal in the 86th minute of Saturday’s game against Syracuse saved the Pirates from dropping their sixth straight Big East game and led the Pirates to a 2-1 victory on Senior Day.
It also earned the team a weekend split after the Hall fell to No. 18 St. John’s, 3-1.
“We wanted to try and pull two wins out on the weekend to give ourselves a chance at the Big East playoffs,” head coach Kazbek Tambi said. “We knew we were playing two strong opponents.”
The Hall now has a conference record of 1-7-1 and an overall record of 5-10-1.
Before the game, the Pirates’ three seniors, Megan Mills, Kirah Hiltz, and Kaitlyn Rogers were honored by the school for wearing the blue and white.
On Saturday against Syracuse, sophomore Danielle Schulmann began the scoring for the Pirates towards the end of the first half.
In the 33rd minute, Schulmann received a pass from sophomore Ashley Beamish off of a corner kick and drilled it in the back of the net to put the Hall on the board 1-0.
Syracuse answered early in the next half, when Tina Romagnuolo scored on a shot from ten yards out that beat the Hall’s redshirt freshman goalkeeper Elizabeth Bond to tie things up.
The goal that gave the Pirates the victory came with less than five minutes remaining in the game.
Once again, Schulmann played a big part in the play.
In the 86th minute she dribbled past two defenders before crossing the ball to Soma, who then shot from 16 yards out and beat Orange senior goalkeeper Eliza Bennett-Hattan to give the Hall a permanent lead.
“We’ve had too many games where the outcome was in the balance and unfortunately we’ve been on the short-end of those games,” Tambi said. “It was good, for a change, to come out of one of those on top in the end.”
Bond made four saves in her second career victory.
In the game against the Red Storm on Thursday, Owen T. Carroll Field
was covered in rain due to passing storms.
Rogers had the Pirates’ lone goal which came in the first half of the game.
She scored on a pass from Mills that successfully crossed the box and left Rogers with a wide open net and gave the Pirates a 1-0 lead.
With this goal, the Pirates second-longest scoring drought in history was snapped at just over 464 minutes.
“It was very important to get the goal in that game, even in a losing cause, because we need to build confidence that we can create opportunities and will put it in the net,” Tambi said. “It was great to be able to get that in the first half against St. John’s.”
From there on out, the Red Storm controlled the game.
Sophomore Jen Leaverton led the way for St. John’s with two goals.
Her first one came early in the second half, when she beat freshman goalkeeper Jennifer Pettigrew from 20 yards out.
Just over six minutes later, Leaverton scored from 16 yards away to help the Red Storm increase their lead to 2-0.
It was her third goal of the season.
In the 83rd minute the Red Storm stretched their lead to 3-0 behind a goal by senior Kaitlin Hass, which ended up being the final score.
“At this point, it’s not so much about postseason play. It’s about having pride and the kids making a statement on where they are in this game and where they want to go,” Tambi said.
The Hall will play on Friday at Louisville, and end their regular season two days later on Sunday at Cinncinati.
Nicholas Parco can be reached at email@example.com.