MORGANTOWN, W.Va. - The No. 12-ranked West Virginia University women’s soccer team dropped a 4-2 decision at Rutgers in a preseason scrimmage, today, at Yurcak Field, in Piscataway, New Jersey.
The Scarlet Knights built a 4-1 first-half advantage that proved too much for the Mountaineers to overcome.
“Today was a great opportunity for us to get better,” said Mountaineer coach Nikki Izzo-Brown. “I saw a lot out there that we need to clean up. I’m looking forward to returning to Dreamswork Field and getting back to work.”
WVU put seven shots on-goal today, while RU tallied eight. The Mountaineer defense held the Scarlet Knights to two shots on-goal in the second half.
Redshirt-freshman Michelle Newhouse
earned the start in goal and played the entire first half. Junior Hannah Steadman
played all 45 minutes in the second half. All but two Mountaineers saw time on the field today.
Following a quick score from RU in the third minute, the Mountaineers got on the scoreboard in the seventh minute off the foot of junior forward Kailey Utley
. Senior forward Kate Schwindel
played a 40-yard ball over the back line to Utley, and the St. Louis, Missouri, native chipped her shot over the Scarlet Knight goalkeeper from 20-yards out.
The Scarlet Knights quickly recovered the advantage, scoring six minutes later. RU played the ball through the backline and slotted the shot down the middle. A fourth first-half goal was scored off a service.
Schwindel was involved in two first-half WVU opportunities. She had a chance for a second assist in the 20th minute, as a service to sophomore defender Carly Black
resulted in a header that went just wide of the net. Then, one minute later, she beat the RU keeper for a clear shot at the goal, but the ball was narrowly cleared off the line by a Scarlet Knight defender.
The Mountaineers’ second score came with 13:22 left in the match, as combination play between Utley and freshman midfielder Carla Portillo
in the final third resulted in a goal for Portillo.
Several chances eluded the Mountaineers in the second half. Junior defender Leah Emaus
’ shot off a corner in the 49th minute went high and wide, just nicking the goal post. Additionally, the RU goalkeeper made a save off a shot from junior defender Cari Price
in the 75th minute. Price took a drop pass from Portillo that was pushed wide by the keeper.
The two teams played through a steady downpour all afternoon.
The Mountaineers will hold their only home preseason scrimmage this weekend, as they kick against Navy on Saturday, Aug. 16, at 1 p.m., at Dick Dlesk Soccer Stadium. Admission is free for all fans.