Another game for the women’s soccer team led to yet another heartbreaking defeat, this time to Middlebury. The Cardinals are now 0-8-1 in conference and 1-11-2 overall, while Middebury improved to 5-5-0.
Coming into the contest without having scored a goal in four straight games, the Cardinals finally broke out of their slump in the 22nd minute with an opening point. Sarah Sylla ’17 knocked home a corner kick from Maddy Keane ’16 at the left post to put the Cardinals on the board, giving Sylla her second goal of the season. Not to be outdone, though, was Middlebury’s Hannah Robinson, who scored off a cross in the 33rd minute of the game to even the score at one goal apiece.
The teams went into the half deadlocked, until the Cardinals broke through in the 66th minute when Marisa Yang ’16 scored on a penalty kick to give the Cardinals a lead. However, Middlebury’s Jamie Soroka would answer almost immediately, lofting a shot over keeper Rachel Hobert ’16 only 34 seconds later. The Cardinals surely would’ve settled for a tie, as Middlebury kept the afterburners on all game, but it was not meant to be. Middlebury’s Carter Talgo scored from six yards out in the 88th minute to give the Panthers a 3-2 lead, and ultimately, a victory. The Panthers outshot the Cardinals by a margin of 24-7, and Cardinal keeper Rachel Hobert made six saves on the day.
Hobert had a few things to say about her team’s season.
“Unfortunately, it turned into a rebuilding year, in that we focused on the big picture past this season, and more so on the next few years to make the program better,” Hobert said. “Individually, I’d say that it was great for me to continue to build experience. I played under a senior, so now that she will be gone next year, hopefully I am ready now. As a team, too, I’m really excited because the girls that are staying are great girls, but we’re sad to see the seniors leave.”
For next year, Hobert has some big aspirations.
“I’m excited being an upperclassmen now,” Hobert said. “As a senior, I’ll be able to lead and take on more roles. My class and I are tougher on other players. We like to have fun, but we also really want to win, and are really committed to next year.”
Hobert made it clear that she and the rest of her teammates want to win their final game of year, against NESCAC foe Conn College.
“We want it bad,” Hobert said. “We actually beat them 2-0 in our scrimmage at the beginning of the year, but they have had a really great season. They’re fighting for home position in the playoffs, but we just want to win. We almost crushed Middlebury’s dreams, but unfortunately couldn’t pull it off. We’re getting closer and closer each game. Middlebury was a tough game, and we’ve been struggling, so a win would feel great to end the season.”
The Cardinals close the season out this Tuesday against Conn College. The Camels, as Hobert mentioned, have had an incredible year. They’ve already clinched a home game in the first round of the NESCAC tournament, something the Camels have never previously accomplished. Conn College currently sits at 12-2 overall, and 7-2 in NESCAC play. Hopefully, the Cardinals can play the spoiler this weekend and gain some confidence heading into next season with a win over their nationally-ranked NESCAC foe.