Oct. 13, 2013
PISCATAWAY, N.J. (SMU) - The SMU Mustangs women's soccer team lost at Rutgers 1-0 on Sunday afternoon, despite a flurry of late scoring chances that nearly sent the match to overtime.
SMU fell to 7-7-0 (2-4-0 American Athletic Conference) while Rutgers improved to 11-2-1 (4-1-0).
The Mustangs earned a free kick in the last two minutes of the match off to the right off the box, giving senior Courtney Smith a chance to either cross the ball to a teammate or take a shot at tying the game herself. Smith took the latter option and nearly became the hero of the day, but the ball bounced off the crossbar to keep the home team in front. Rikki Clarke managed to corral the rebound in the box and fired a shot off her left foot which was stopped by Rutgers goalkeeper Jessica Janosz. SMU was not able to string together another shot before time expired.
Rutgers put the Mustangs in a hole early, with Erica Skroski getting the Scarlet Knights a 1-0 lead at the 1:44 mark by snagging a loose ball from five yards out and shooting it past SMU goalie Lauryn Bodden.
"We didn't start the way we wanted to," Head Coach Chris Petrucelli said. "I think it woke us up and we played better after that."
Clarke also had a chance to tie the match in the 84th minute, as she quickly took a shot from around the penalty dot that sailed high. Clarke led the Mustangs with five shots on the day.
Petrucelli appreciated the effort his team played with, and is confident heading into SMU's three-game homestand to end the regular season.
"If we play with the kind of effort we played with for most of the game we can win any game we're in," Petrucelli said.
The loss marks the first time SMU has lost consecutive games since Aug. 31-Sept. 2 of last season.
SMU will take on Houston at Westcott Field on Friday at 7 p.m. CT. Tickets are available at SMUTickets.com.