Friday afternoon at Sports Backers Stadium hosted an Atlantic 10 Women’s Soccer Semi-Final match between #6 VCU and #7 Saint Joseph’s. In an evenly matched clash, VCU was able to move on to Championship Sunday in search of A-10 silverware.
Crank Up The Tempo
VCU started the match at a high tempo in search of opportunities. Saint Joesph’s felt the pressure from VCU’s defense as the Rams held the advantage on ball possession. The Rams were able to create a few shooting chance but could not get their boot on the ball towards the net.
Tori Browne managed to get VCU’s first strike off in the 6th minute that forced Grace Bendon to make a diving save. Samanta Jerabek unleashed another strike at Bendon that was once again saved by the SJU goalkeeper.
Hawks Fly Back
Audrey Sanderson was busy later in goal as the half resumed. Saint Joe’s took grasp of their offense and soared towards goal with multiple strikes. Sanderson was able to make saves on difficult headers and got assistance from Sarah Gibson on a block attempt.
Near the end of the half, VCU reignited offensively. Kelly Graves and Julia Suarez took chances that nearly found the back of the net. Morgan Bower for Saint Joe’s almost played spoiler with a header that forced Sanderson to make one more save before halftime.
The Golden PK
Saint Joesph’s and VCU resumed a close battle in the 2nd half. Lyndsey Gutzmer nearly scored the opening goal of the match in the 63rd minute but the crossbar denied her promising chance.
A golden chance arrived for the Rams in the 71st minute as Saint Joesph’s was penalized with a handball in the penalty area. Megan Dell stepped up to the spot and finished the job off the penalty kick to give VCU a 1-0 lead.
The pitch was on lockdown for Saint Joe’s with VCU’s constant pressure. The lead nor chances were not given up by the Black & Gold as the Hawks could not fly anywhere near the net.
VCU Women’s Soccer advanced to the Atlantic 10 Women’s Soccer Championship with a 1-0 win over #7 Saint Joseph’s. #6 VCU will take on #1 La Salle on Sunday, November 5th at Sports Backers Stadium with the A-10 Championship on the line. Kick-Off will begin at 12 Noon.