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Pitt wins City Game, beating Duquesne, 3-0

Pitt wins City Game, beating Duquesne, 3-0

NCAA Women’s Division I Soccer

FINAL: Pitt 3, Duquesne 0

GAME STATS

Game Summary

Newcomer Landy Mertz scored two goals in her Panthers’ debut and Pitt women’s soccer (10-5-0) began its spring portion of the 2020-21 season with a 3-0 shutout of Duquesne (0-1-0) in the City Game Sunday afternoon at Ambrose Urbanic Field. The Panthers tied the 1995 team (10-7-1) for the most wins in a single season and also guaranteed this year’s team to have the highest winning-percentage in program history.

Dominating ball possession to begin the game but unable to generate many scoring chances, Pitt broke through with its fifth corner kick late in the first half. Athalie Palomo scored on her shot from the right corner in the 38th minute for her first goal of the season.

The field became even more tilted in the second half as the Panthers put the game out of reach for the Dukes. Mertz got her first goal in the 61st minute. Chloe Minas launched a ball from midfield over the defense to a streaking Mertz, who pushed the ball at the top of the box past the goalkeeper and easily touched the ball into an open net.

Mertz’s second goal came in the 80th minute. A few yards above the middle of the box, Emily Yaple feed Mertz to the right, who put lofted a shot over the goalkeeper into the top left corner of the net.

With March 21’s game at Marshall cancelled, Pitt is actively trying to schedule an opponent for its last game of the year.

NEWS AND NOTES

  • Pitt improved to 11-4 in the City Game, and third-year Pitt head coach Randy Waldrum has led the Panthers to shutout victories in both matchups in his tenure (2-0 on Sept. 6, 2018).
  • Caitlyn Lazzarini (3-3-0) made two saves.
  • Pitt had the advantage in corner kicks (7-1), shots on goal (8-2) and shots (14-9).
  • Mertz and Amanda West both had a game-high four shots, and Mertz put all four on goal.

 

Gameday Updates 

FINAL – PITT 3, DUQUESNE 0

We’ll have a more detailed recap later on Pittsburgh Soccer Now, but the Panthers took control of the contest, especially after its first half goal from Athalie Palomo’s corner kick.  In her debut at Pitt, after transferring from Dayton in the fall, Landy Mertz scored twice in the second half.

Duquesne (0-1) will now have to bounce back as they get ready for a busy eight-game schedule

79′ – GOAL – PITT 3, DUQ 0

Landy Mertz with the brace in her debut as a Panther!

 

Pitt continues to add pressure with more shots and corners as they’re clearly in control of the contest in the second half.

Here’s a look at Mertz’s first goal…

61′ – GOAL – PITT 2, DUQ 0

Landy Mertz breaks through — and behind the Duquesne back line for her first goal as a Panther!

Assist came from Chloe Minas!

HALF – PITT 1, DUQ 0  

43′ – st Shot by DU Kirstein, Brooke, bottom left, saved by Lazzarini, Caitlyn.

37′ – GOAL – PITT 1, DUQ 0

ATHALIE PALOMO’s BENDING CORNER GOES INTO NET!

Pitt kept putting pressure — and its fifth corner kick led to Athalie Paleomo goal!

30′ – Pitt continues to hold possession edge — and now starting to look more dangerous getting into box with a few shots and corners.

10′ – both teams letting each other play.  Pitt with most of possession, but Duquesne showing they can counter quickly.

7′ – first shot attempt of match — Duq’s Hannah Nguyen

Al Alvine told me on Friday Deena Debaldo would likely be held out of starting in this match due to having been quarantined due to COVID-19 exposure.

Pitt starting XI: 

1 C. LAZZARINI
3 M. EDWARDS
6 L. MERTZ
8 L. PAIS
9 A. WEST
10 E. YAPLE
11 H. DAVIDSON
12 A. BOUT
15 C. MINAS
17 A. PALOMO
19 K. MCKAY

Duquesne starting XI:  

GK – Megan Virgin

Def – Sydney Routch, Ashley Rodriguez, Marley Smith, Kayla Winicki

MF – Hannah Nguyen, Alex Saturni, Emma Bundy

F – Lauren Bell, Jaimi Araujo, Lexi Kendro

Preview

This is always a fun game for those who follow soccer closely in the Pittsburgh area, especially as both programs have boosted its rosters with lots of local talent.

After missing out on playing each other in 2019, Sunday’s match represents the first time that Pitt and Duquesne will face each other in the regular season since 2018.

The Panthers are renewing its regular season, after playing 14 games in the fall, while the Dukes are finally excited and eager to get back on the field for the first time in 491 days.

Pitt will be searching for a program high 10th win of the season (they also won 10 games in 1995), while the Dukes need this match as an important tune-up prior to what should be a challenging eight-game Atlantic 10 schedule through March and early April as part of a four-team pod with Dayton, St. Louis and St. Bonaventure.

The last time they played in 2018, the Panthers came away with a fairly decisive 2-0 win against a Duquesne squad that started eight freshman. This time around the Dukes have a deeper and more experienced squad, while Pitt’s level of talent has substantially also improved since then.

The key match-up to watch may be how well the Dukes back line can slow down Pitt’s Amanda West, who comes into the Spring as the nation’s leading scorer. West leads the nation in goals (13), game-winning goals (four), points (30), goals per game (1.0), points per game (2.31) and shots on goal per game (2.46) while ranking fourth in shots per game (4.38)

The last time Duquesne beat Pitt was in 2016, as were were there for the Dos a Cero result which gave the Dukes, who were the defending A-10 champs, the bragging rights in the series at that time.  Overall, Pitt holds the series edge, 9-4 in the series history.

 

Recent PSN Coverage of Pitt & Duquesne women’s soccer and past ‘City Games’ 

 

A team intact: Battle-tested roster gives Duquesne women high hopes this spring

 

Randy Waldrum, fresh from international duty, gearing Pitt up for rivalry with Duquesne

 

Duquense women’s soccer to play eight game A10 schedule plus face Pitt in renewal of ‘City Game’

 

Amanda West makes Pitt women’s soccer history in 4-1 win over Navy

 

Gravante leads Panthers to ‘City Game’ victory over Duquesne, 2-0

 

Kardelser's strike lifts Pitt to 'City Game' win over Duquesne in 2OT

 

Duquesne Women Beat Pitt 2-0 For Bragging Rights


Pitt Game Notes 

Amanda West Pittsburgh

Photo courtesy of the University of Pittsburgh women’s soccer team.

A CHANCE FOR HISTORY

  • Despite playing less games than usual due to COVID, Pitt has a chance to become the winningest team in program history.
  • Going 9-5-0 overall in the fall, one more win would tie the 1995 team (10-7-1) for the most wins in a single season and also guarantee this year’s team to have the highest winning-percentage in program history.
  • This year’s squad is only the third to ever post a winning record (8-5-5 in 2009).

TOP MARKS IN THE COUNTRY

  • With the strong start to the season, the team ranks among the best in Division I in several categories.
  • The Panthers lead the nation in total points (83) and goals (30).
  • They rank in the top-20 in other team statistics: second in assists (23), third in scoring offense (2.31 goals per game), 11th in shots per game (14.62), 13th in shots on goal per game (7.00) and 20th in corner kicks per game (5.54).

LEADING SCORER IN THE NATION, AMANDA WEST

  • West leads the nation in goals (13), game-winning goals (four), points (30), goals per game (1.0), points per game (2.31) and shots on goal per game (2.46) while ranking fourth in shots per game (4.38) and tied for fourth in assists (four) with teammate Kate McKay.
  • With 30 points on the season, she broke the program record for points, which she set last year with 29.
  • She hit the ground running this season, just like she did last year, with a goal in the first seven games for the longest goal-scoring streak in program history.
  • With only 31 career games played, she already ranks among the top all-time scorers in program history.

o   First in points (59), eight ahead of Ashley Cuba (2009-12).

o   Tied in career goals (23) with Cuba.

o   Tied for third in assists (13) with Liz Carroll (2007-10).

  • She has recorded nine 3+ point games, the most in school history.
  • Her 13 goals this fall are most in a single-season, three ahead of her total last year and Cande Ruiz (1998).
  • In assists, she tied with Charity McClure (1998) and Katelyn Ruhe (2010) for the single-season record.

ACC HONORS

  • With the league deciding to give out season awards after the conclusion of the fall, West was selected to the All-ACC Second Team.
  • She became the first-ever Panther to be selected as high as the second team for the annual conference accolade, as last year she became the first in program history to ever earn an All-ACC honor by being picked to the third team.
  • Also in 2019 she was named to the United Soccer Coaches’ All-Atlantic Region Third-Team, becoming the second-ever Panther to receive all-region honors.

 

A NEWCOMER’S HOMETOWN ARRIVAL

  • Sophomore Landy Mertz transferred into the Pitt program from Dayton and will eligible to compete this spring due to not competing this fall.
  • A Pittsburgh native and graduate of Upper Saint Clair High School, last year Mertz was named to the Atlantic 10 All-Rookie Team
  • Starting all 19 matches as a midfielder, she scored three goals along with two assists for eight points and led the team with 22 of 43 shots on goal.

BEST START IN PROGRAM HISTORY

  • Pitt started the season 6-0 for the first time in program history.
  • The six victories to start the season was the second-longest winning-streak in school history, as the 2015 team rattled off eight wins in a row.
  • The Panthers defeated the Citadel twice on the road, 2-1 in overtime and 1-0. Previously, Pitt has beaten Syracuse 2-0 in the home and ACC opener, 1-0 in overtime at Navy and Appalachian State twice on the road in the first week of the year with 4-0 and 7-1 victories.
  • The Panthers have a 17-2 goal aggregate for the season, best in the nation.
  • Playing 548 minutes and 20 seconds in the six-game span, the Panthers only trailed in 11 minutes and 36 seconds, all in the 2-1 comeback win at the Citadel.
  • Eight Panthers scored the 17 combined goals.
  • The Panthers put limited pressure on their goalkeepers with an average of 1.5 saves per game.
  • West scored three-straight game-winning goals, something no other Panther in program history has done before.
  • West converted two golden goals off penalty kicks at Navy and the Citadel in back-to-back games.
  • Against the Orange, the Panthers had a dominate advantage in shots (27-4) and shots on goals (12-1).
  • The season-opening shutout at the Mountaineers was the biggest-ever margin of victory in a season-opener.
  • The Panthers had not defeated an opponent by 4+ goals since a 6-1 victory over St. John’s on Oct. 9, 2011.

SCOUTING DUQUESNE

  • The Dukes finally begin their 2020-21 season as the Atlantic-10 Conference opted out of playing in the fall.
  • Duquesne was picked ninth out of 14th in the league’s preseason coaches’ poll.
  • The Dukes, who graduated just one player from the 2019 squad that went 6-8-3, return their entire offense of 22 goals, 15 assists and 59 points.
  • Atlantic 10 Second Team selection Deena DeBadlo had nine goals and 22 points as the leading scorer.
  • The matchup with Pitt is the only nonconference game on the schedule, as Duquesne is slated for a combined eight A-10 games against three opponents: Dayton, Saint Louis and St. Bonaventure.

THE SERIES

  • Pitt has a decisive advantage in the series with 10 wins in 14 games.
  • The two teams last met on Sept. 6, 2018, a 2-0 win at home for Pitt.

Duquesne Game Notes 

THE SPRING SEASON

  • This is the lone nonconference match of the spring campaign for the Dukes, who will play an abbreviated eight-game Atlantic 10 schedule.
  • Duquesne is slated to play three games against St. Bonaventure, three against Saint Louis and two against Dayton.
  • The Dukes were picked to finish ninth out of 14 teams in the A-10 Preseason Coaches’ Poll.
  • The Dukes are 10-14-2 all-time in season openers.

THE SERIES

  • Duquesne is 4-9-0 all-time against the Panthers.
  • Pitt won the teams’ last meeting on Sept. 6, 2018 by a score of 2-0.
  • The Panthers have won two straight over the Dukes after Duquesne earned two victories in a row in 2014 (1-0) and 2016 (2-0).
  • Head coach Al Alvine is 2-4-0 against Pitt.

SCOUTING THE DUKES

  • Duquesne returns a veteran squad which posted a  6-8-3 mark in 2019.
  • The Dukes, who graduated just one player from last season, welcome back their entire offense of 22 goals, 15 assists and 59 points.
  • Atlantic 10 Second Team selection Deena DeBaldo returns for Duquesne after tallying nine goals. Her 22 points in a single season marked the fourth-most in program history.
  • Jaimi Araujo finished with 10 points on the season including four goals.
  • Megan Virgin returns after starting all 17 games in net for Duquesne last season.
  • Head coach Al Alvine enters his ninth season at the helm in 2021, helping the Dukes to an A-10 postseason appearance in four of the last five seasons.

SCOUTING THE PANTHERS 

  • Pitt (9-5-0), led by head coach Randy Waldrum, played 14 games during the fall season. The Panthers need just one win to tie a program record for victories in a season.
  • Pitt ranks third in the country in scoring offense (2.31 goals per game), 11th in shots per game (14.62), 13th in shots on goal per game (7.00) and 20th in corner kicks per game (5.54).
  • Amanda West paces the Panthers with 30 points on the season, including a team-high 13 goals.

NEXT UP 
Duquesne opens A-10 play and the home portion of the Dukes’ schedule hosting Dayton next Sunday, March 14 at noon at Arthur J. Rooney Field.

Pittsburgh Division I College Soccer Schedule (Spring 2021)

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