Syracuse women’s soccer gets back on track against Miami
Syracuse Women's Soccer gets back on track against Miami
After dropping their first two ACC matchups of the season — with a score of 1-0 — the Syracuse Women’s Soccer team was in pursuit of an intra-conference victory, and what would be their first win against fellow Atlantic Coast Rivals since 2020.
The University of Miami proved to be Sunday afternoon’s victim as the Orange bounced back from an equalizing goal to topple the Hurricanes 3-1 and improve to 8-3 on the year.
The match opened with a score from Chelsea Domond in the 24th minute, good for Syracuse’s first goal in multiple games. After a feed from Erin Flurey that seemed to be a lost cause, Domond beat the defender around the edge, took a beat and calmly put the ball through.
Postgame, Coach Nicky Thrasher Adams was proud of how composed Domond was the moment in which she scored the goal. Adams commended Domond for battling through the defense.
“It’s something we’ve missed early on in the season, so it’s good to see that it’s finally coming all together,” Adams said.
In the 32nd minute, disaster nearly struck the Orange. A Miami corner kick had the Canes right in front of the back post. Goalkeeper Shea Vanderbosch was on the ground after blocking the initial attack but was still able to recover and stop a goal that Miami’s sideline thought was theirs.
At halftime, the Orange adjusted the attack against the ‘Canes to capitalize on their weaknesses, which Coach Adams explained postgame.
“One of the things that we’ve realized about Miami is they don’t like playing the ball long at all.” Adams said. “They over-possess to a fault. So we needed our forwards to get out of the midfield and be higher and push them back even further.”
With repeated opportunities to score in the second half, the Orange were able to charge up and down the board statistically. Both Syracuse and Miami had five shot attempts in the first half, but the Orange were able to have nine tries in the second period while keeping their opponents at five. A staggering 10 of Syracuse’s 14 attempts were shots on goal.
“It’s important… that’s a good stat,” Adams said. “That’s something we’ve been trying to [increase] for sure. For us to win games, we need to put everything on target.”
Vanderbosch had yet another moment of glory in the 71st minute with a leaping save to the right post to hold Miami scoreless, but the U were able to push just two minutes later as defender Emma Tucker scored.
In the 81st minute, Domond fed a beautiful through ball to sophomore Ashley Rauch who scored from the right side, bringing the entire crowd to its feet, re-energizing the team and providing the needed momentum to work towards victory.
“The thing about Chelsea is she is so dangerous in so many ways, you can play in her behind, she’s technically sound, she can get out of tight spaces if her back is to the goal,” Adams said of her star forward. “But she [also] attracts so much attention. That’s how Ashley got that goal, there were like three people on Chelsea, Ash made that great run and made that finish.”
Rauch reflected the same sentiments as her coach postgame, saying that Domond is a very unselfish player but knows when she needs to be selfish. The midfielder offered a breakdown of how she saw the play develop that essentially decided the game
“I saw the slip ball, and I knew she was going to play it so I was like ‘I have to make the run.'” Rauch said. “And then the keeper, she’s very tall, so I saw the space under her arms and I knew I could go early.”
After minutes of running down the clock in the corner of the fields, reserve forward Blue Ellis beat her defender in the middle of the field on a feed from Domond. Coach Adams and her staff were less thrilled about that particular score considering the risk but were happy to see Ellis get one through the net after suffering a minor injury earlier in the match.
Sunday’s win being an ACC victory is everything to the team. Rauch described the victory as “awesome,” and said that Syracuse’s past failure in inter-conference play makes this newfound success mean all the more.
“We went 0-12 last year, [and] we weren’t able to get that win, so getting that first win under our belts, especially after two tough losses — even though we played so well — is amazing.” Rauch said.” We all couldn’t be happier, are going to celebrate and move towards the next one.”
Next up for the Orange is Wake Forest, where they will travel to see the Deacons on Sunday at noon. Although Syracuse will now be on the road for their next three matchups, Rauch says the team’s mindset won’t change after a four-game homestretch.
“We go in hard, it’s the same game,” Rauch said. “Yeah, we play in front of other fans, but it’s the same game. We know we can do it, we just have to keep it up and keep our intensity up as a team.”