The Seton Hall women’s soccer team had its home opener ruined by Duquesne Friday night by a score of 3-1.
Head coach Rick Stainton was not pleased with the loss, and he chalked this one up to his team’s inconsistency.
“It’s our consistency,” he said. “We do show very good moments of being able to possess the ball and get forward and get into that attacking third, but once we get into that attacking third we’re not really as productive as we should be. The other part is we’ve been giving up a lot of goals, and that’s pretty much uncharacteristic of us. All of last year, especially, it was our staple–and we have a lot of those players who have returned as defenders–and we just have to try and minimize opportunities that we’re giving these teams.”
The Dukes quickly got onto the score sheet after a scramble in the box led to a goal after just six minutes of play. The Pirates quickly recuperated, though, as junior midfielder Frankie Maier and sophomore midfielder Jackie Saint John helped to nullify the Dukes’ quick attacks.
As the game turned to halftime, it was clear that the Pirates were inching toward an equalizing goal that would retake momentum and win back their home fans. The second half started quickly for the Dukes’ goalkeeper, as she was tested early by shots from Maier and freshman forward Tanika Roach.
Finally, though, she was beaten in the 71st minute by a difficult shot from outside of the box by Maier. The goal was Maier’s first of the season, and it looked like the Pirates had regained the momentum.
“Frankie’s goal was great and she was long overdue,” Stainton said. “She works tremendously hard and she really is one of those box-to-box midfielders who works to get into the attack–also works to get behind the ball and defend. So for her to earn that opportunity and get a great, clean shot off with her left foot, which isn’t her dominant foot, is very, very, very nice to see.”
However, the Dukes responded by scoring two quick goals in a span of 10 minutes to push the lead to 3-1.
The score looked insurmountable for the Pirates as the clock turned to the 80th minute. However, the Pirates tried their best to recover as shots were fired from Maier, Saint John and Roach, but to no avail.
The game ended at 3-1, dropping the Pirates’ record to 0-4-1.
As Stainton said after the match, Seton Hall still has much to work on.
“We’ve got to continue to work on taking care of the ball, which is through possession and our technical development,” he said. “And produce more on the attacking end, getting more shots off. But for us to get the ball we have to defend well.”
The Pirates return to action Monday night against Monmouth at 7 p.m. in West Long Branch.
Sydney Kpundeh can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org