Women’s soccer drops OT thriller 1-0 to Manhattan

Tanner Harding and Gabbi Riggi

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The overcast skies were a slight omen on the afternoon, as the women’s soccer team dropped another heartbreaking game in overtime. The Manhattan Jaspers, second in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference, kept their undefeated streak in conference play alive, defeating Quinnipiac 1-0 in the 95th minute.

The Jaspers (9-3-1, 5-0-1 MAAC) came into Hamden aware of the Bobcats (6-7-0, 2-4-0 MAAC) playing spoiler to Monmouth’s push to remain at the top of the conference when they defeated them in double overtime on Saturday.

“We’ve got to play to our strengths,” said Quinnipiac head coach Dave Clarke. “You saw, we didn’t deserve to lose that game.”

Manhattan’s Erica Modena, fresh off of a yellow card in the 92nd minute, split the two defenders, and drove in with a short chip shot under the crossbar, just past the reach of Quinnipiac goalkeeper Natalia Grodzki. It was Modena’s team-leading tenth goal on the year.

Photo: Emma Robertson

Photo: Emma Robertson

Whistles and stops in play were peppered throughout the chippy match, which included a second yellow card on Manhattan defender Jenny Bitzer. The physicality hit on both sides of the ball, with Quinnipiac freshman Nadya Gill taking a brunt of the hits.

The tension, frustration and emotions carried over past the final whistle, in a game where both teams felt the referees intruded too much.

“It’s a good finish, but the question is, should she have been on the field at the time?” said Clarke. “If he does what he’s supposed to do as a referee, then she’s not on to score the game winner.”

The referees, along with frustrations of a 0-0 game were two factors Clarke had hoped to negate going into the extra frame, as well as trying to use fatigue “as a factor” to try and surpass the Jaspers.

Momentum looked to be in the Bobcats favor, as Jess Fontaine clanked a shot off the cross bar just seconds into the overtime after winning possession. In this game of inches, Fontaine came up just short.

The Quinnipiac defense met stride for side with the conference leading Manhattan defense, with a strong push from Joanna Proctor, Amanda Westman, Sarahkate Norton and Caroline DeBonis.

Both teams were limited in shot pressure, with Manhattan getting six shots, and Quinnipiac posting eight shots, with three on goal. The only shot on goal for the Jaspers was the difference maker.

Quinnipiac will push to get back to .500 on the year on Saturday, when they travel to Canisius College to face the eighth seeded MAAC opponent.