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Schleicher’s 90th minute goal lifts RMU women to season opening win

From Robert Morris University report

With only seconds remaining in regulation, Robert Morris University women’s soccer senior Jane Schleicher knocked in a failed clearance to lift the Colonials past UMBC, 1-0, this evening from Retriever Soccer Park.

After topping the Retrievers last season in overtime, Schleicher played hero this time around for Robert Morris (1-0, 0-0 NEC) in the 90th minute of a scoreless tug-of-war.

The senior midfielder won the free kick that led to the game-winning goal, earning a foul on the right side of the 18. A swinging cross initially found the head of a UMBC defender, but it pinballed to Schleicher for the winning tally.

RMU threatened the Retriever back line in the 30th minute as Schleicher played a through ball to Taylor Burkley. Burkley got past the last line of defense, but UMBC goalkeeper Leah Roth managed to slide in and punch the ball away at the last second. Roth was tested again 12 minutes later when the senior found Kristina Kelley in the box, with the junior forcing a reaction save.

Sydney Bruckner kept the match scoreless in the 70th minute with her best save of the night. The hosts played a corner kick into the 18, leaving a volley attempt from Erin Stevenson. Stevenson picked out the right post, but Bruckner fully extended herself to corral the shot with both gloves.

Four minutes before Schleicher’s winner, she again set up a teammate with a dangerous through ball, but Roth reacted well and cleared it a half of step ahead of Hannah Schmidt.

The victory is the Colonials’ first in a season opener since 2014, when they defeated Duquesne, 3-2. It’s also RMU’s first season-commencing road win since 2005, as it toppled Youngstown State to open that campaign, 3-1.

Bruckner extended her shutout streak to three with seven saves. Dating back to last season, the sophomore has made 38 stops and allowed just two goals over her last six matches.

Robert Morris returns to Moon Township for its home opener on Sunday, August 19 at 1:00 p.m. when it hosts Ohio, who opened the season with a 1-0 loss at Pitt on Friday.


PItt MF Michael Sullivan

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