Women’s soccer beats Siena in overtime, 2-1

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Women’s soccer beats Siena in overtime, 2-1

Photo: Emma Robertson

Photo: Emma Robertson

Photo: Emma Robertson

Photo: Emma Robertson

Juliana Nikac

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As the game between the Quinnipiac Bobcats (5-4, 2-0 MAAC) and the Siena Saints (4-5, 0-2 MAAC) progressed, it appeared increasingly more likely that the two sides would go home with a draw. Nadya Gill made sure her Bobcats went home with three points as Quinnipiac beat Siena 2-1 in overtime.

The Quinnipiac Bobcats, fresh off a colossal 11-0 win over St. Peter’s, hosted the Siena Saints on Wednesday in hopes of advancing to 2-0 in conference play. In a game that can largely be classified as sloppy for both sides, the Bobcats came storming out of the gate early and put pressure on the Saints’ defense and keeper. However, they weren’t able to string together enough passes to get a good look at the net.

The best opportunity for Quinnipiac in the first half came in just the third minute, when Nadya Gill made a run, shoving defenders off the ball and forcing her way into the 18-yard box. However, she took too big of a last touch, and the ball rolled straight to the feet of Siena goalkeeper Taylor Dorado.

Siena finally broke the scoreless tie in the 23rd minute, when a miscommunication between Quinnipiac defenders and goalkeeper Olivia Myszewski caused the ball to fall right to the feet of Siena junior forward Gabby Albano inside the 6-yard box. With nothing but space in front of her, she put the ball off the crossbar and into the top left, pushing the Saints ahead.

“I think it was just a little miscommunication. Nothing really more than that,” said Quinnipiac midfielder Laura Nicholas. “The keeper and the back four weren’t really on the same page, and things like that happen. It’s part of the game.”

Quinnipiac would enter the half without a goal despite their intense physicality on the ball, and Nicholas knew something had to be fixed.

“We lost our way,” said Nicholas. “We made it difficult for ourselves in the first half by conceding that goal, and I think the coaches just wanted us to refocus and play our Quinnipiac soccer that we know how to play.”

Nicholas would eventually prove to be the one to get the Bobcats out of their first half rut. She found the back of the net just sixty-five seconds after the second half kickoff. A quick one-two play with junior midfielder Jess Gargan followed by a pretty finish with the right foot that found the bottom right would even out the score line, shifting the momentum in the Bobcats’ direction.

44 more minutes would come and go without a goal, and the two sides headed to overtime. Not even seven minutes in, however, Nadya Gill continued to do what she’s been doing all season. She made a run past two Siena defenders and placed the ball in the bottom left to send the Bobcats home with three points.

“I got a good ball. All I did was take a touch past a defender and take a shot,” said Gill on her game-winner. Gill’s day wasn’t all optimistic, however, as she often found herself swarmed by Saints defenders who were all aggressively trying to take the ball off her dangerous foot. The pressure lead to some sloppy turnovers. But as the game progressed, she made the adjustments necessary to limit the Saints’ defensive efficiency.

“I had to keep moving, and knowing that they were coming on me means that there was always a teammate open. So when the ball came my way, I just looked for a quick flick or a pass to someone else and to give them an opportunity to score a goal.”

Gill’s goal marks her fourth of the season in which the goal eventually proved to be a gamewinner, a new school record. But Gill only thanks her teammates for the opportunities they give her up top.

“Honestly, I couldn’t score the goals without my teammates. They’re all goals where I just have to take a touch and shoot. It’s a great feeling, it’s a great record to hold, but it would be impossible without my teammates.”

Quinnipiac’s win marks their fifth of the season, putting them at 5-4 and pushing them over .500 for the first time since their 3-1 loss to Miami. They look to continue their undefeated MAAC campaign when they go to Poughkeepsie, N.Y. to take on the Marist Red Foxes (5-4-1, 2-0 MAAC) on Saturday, Sept. 23 at 12 p.m.

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Women’s soccer beats Siena in overtime, 2-1