From University of Pittsburgh Athletic Department Report
Pitt’s women’s soccer team claimed its first league victory of the season Sunday afternoon, downing Miami in a double-overtime thriller off of a penalty kick goal from Hanna Hannesdottir.
In the 106th minute of action, Hannesdottir snuck a penalty kick past the right side of Miami goalkeeper Phallon Tullis-Joyce, her first goal of the season, to lift the Panthers over the Hurricanes.
Miami’s offense came out fast in the first half, recording eight shots in the first 45 minutes of play, compared to just two for the Panthers. Despite the offensive onslaught, Pitt was able to hold the Hurricanes off the scoreboard, coming up with four key saves in addition to stellar defensive play.
In the second half, the Panthers matched Miami, as both teams took eight shots. Taylor Francis and her defense remained strong, as the senior keeper came up with seven saves.
“We had several chances in the game,” said head coach Greg Miller.
“I thought their [Miami] goal keeper did a pretty good job. We weren’t dangerous enough in finishing the ball whether it was distance or short range. Arielle [Fernandez] had a great chance from short range. However we are able to get a goal whether it be a set piece or if we ran a play, we need to capitalize. When we score more than them that’s the most important thing.”
It was much of the same in the first overtime, as neither squad was able to convert any significant chances. However, just five minutes into the second overtime, a foul was called as Alex Wright was tackled in the box, allowing a penalty kick situation for Hannesdottir. The goal was her first of the season and gave Pitt its first goal since Sept. 11.
With the victory Pitt improves to 2-11-1, 1-5-1 on the season. The win snaps a nine-game losing streak which dated back to Aug. 28.
“Anytime you get a shutout, it’s a team shutout,” added Miller.
“The forwards who defended the midfielders did a nice job, and I thought the back four and Taylor [Francis] did well. Taylor [Francis], had a save in the opening minutes of the game that was very good to keep us in it. Anytime we are able to get a shutout it’s a great thing. I’m pleased we avoided some catastrophic kinds of situations. We were very good in some situations in putting out fires.”
The Panthers will return to action on Sunday, traveling to Syracuse for a Sunday afternoon meeting with the Orange. Pitt return to Ambrose Urbanic Field for a two-game tilt with North Carolina and Duke before closing the regular season at North Carolina State.