College Soccer

So Close

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The UCF women’s soccer team is still on the hunt for its first victory in its conference series against UConn after Sunday’s 3-2 loss to the No. 20 team in the country.

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The Knights regained a 2-1 lead in the 71st minute thanks to senior Ashley Spivey’s slider off a cross from Hannah DeBose, but the Huskies’ Samantha McGuire and Rachel Hill responded with two goals in the next nine minutes to rally and escape with the win.

“It was a little bit of a roller coaster,” UCF head coach Tiffany Roberts Sahaydak said. “Unfortunately, there were a few moments where we didn’t get the job done. Overall I felt like we fought hard and we scored some great goals but it just didn’t go our way.”

UConn lost to USF on Thursday, and the Knights do not match up with their rival until the season finale. After results from this weekend, the American Athletic Conference regular season is shaping up to be an interesting ride.

“Our conference is really strong. Everyone is having a really good season,” Roberts Sahaydak said. “I think it’s going to be neck and neck until the end.”

Mo’s Big Moment
• Sophomore transfer Morgan Ferrara notched her first goal as a Knight to give her team a boost just before half.
• Redshirt sophomore Kayla Adamek, under pressure, managed to slip a cross to Ferrara in the box, and she headed it in with 1:31 to go before the break.
• Ferrara had checked into the match three minutes prior to her score.

McGuire vs. Varis
• UCF goalkeeper Vera Varis had one of the more memorable moments of the game when she dived to save Samantha McGuire’s penalty kick in the 70th minute.
• The Huskies were set up with an opportunity to take the lead when UCF was cited for a handball penalty in the box.
• The freshman deflected the attempt off the post to keep the score tied, 1-1.
• “That’s where it gets emotional because you’re thinking you’re in this game… and it ends up not going our way,” Roberts Sahaydak said. “Obviously it was a big time save and momentum kind of switched back. By her making that save, it kept us in the game for a while.”

Up Next
• UCF heads to East Carolina and Cincinnati next week for its first road conference games of the year.
• The Knights will meet the Pirates on Thursday at 7 p.m. before flying to Cincinnati for Sunday’s 1 p.m. kickoff.

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