Fun. Exciting. Inconsistent.
Members of the Manhattan College women’s soccer team (3-5-2 MAAC, 8-8-2) described their 2014 season as it was coming to an end. They finished the season with a strong 4-2 win against MAAC opponent Saint Peter’s. It was a bittersweet moment for the team as it was their final game playing together.
“We just wanted to play for each other,” senior Daniella Morgante said about her final game. “As seniors, we wanted to take the last four years and put it into one game.”
Their win against Saint Peter’s was their 17th straight over the Peacocks. Sophomore Tara Teal found the back of the net first for the Jaspers off a pass from senior Aislinn McIlvenny. Sophomore Lizzy Carlson scored with an assist by Teal to give Manhattan a 2-0 lead.
“We had the best record since I’ve been here,” senior Shannon Garrity said. “Everyone has contributed so much this year, on and off the field.”
Saint Peter’s responded quickly before McIlvenny scored on a penalty kick about 20 minutes into the second half, her 10th of the season. Freshman Dylan Burns recorded her first career goal and sealed Manhattan’s 4-2 victory. As the season came to a close, the team had positive thoughts on what they accomplished this year.
“Something to be proud of is getting through the season with limited players,” assistant coach Sarah Brady said. “We were hit terribly with injuries. The positive is that is younger players stepped up and kept us within the running. I couldn’t be prouder of the players who stepped in.”
Freshman Carly Perry also looked on the plus side when it came to overcoming injuries.
“I feel like we did really well despite the injuries. We only had two subs for a good chunk of the season,” Perry said. “So it’s really cool that we were able to pull off some wins.”
The team was happy to finish on a high note after a tough loss against Canisius to eliminate them from playoff contention. Their chances were left up to that game, and it did not go in their favor. However, the team stayed positive that the loss would help them in the future.
“Any high-pressure situation like that is hard,” Morgante said. “There’s so much on the line. The only thing you can do is be there for each other and support each other no matter what happens, and that’s what we did.”
In their final week of the season, members of the team looked back at their impressive season and how to improve for next year. Injuries were one factor that the team hopes won’t affect them so much in the future. The team also tended to sit back on defense more and being more offensive is something they want to change.
“We gave up some soft goals, ones that we could have definitely avoided,” Assistant Coach Sarah Brady said. “That’s probably the most disappointing thing. There was nothing that absolutely ripped us apart, but we kept making the same errors.”
“Going forward, we’ve got to work on defense,” Garrity said, “and clearing balls out of the box and the air. On the attacking side, we need to work on finishing our opportunities.”