Just a minute and a half after Richmond’s Emily Dale scored to put the Spiders two goals ahead of the GW women’s soccer team Saturday, junior Jillian Morgan headed a pass from classmate Ashley Starks into the net for her first goal of the season, putting the Colonials within one.
Five minutes later, Starks snuck through two defenders for a shot of her own, only to have it deflected out of bounds. Morgan had another shot to tie the game with less than four minutes to go, but her header in front of the net missed to the left.
Just a few minutes later, the Colonials were out of chances and out of time, losing 2-1 to a Richmond team that has now beaten them in each of the last three seasons.
Despite the loss, Morgan said she thought her team was the better one on the field Sunday.
“I think we outplayed them,” she said. “(It) says a lot about us and I think we can beat the other top teams. That’s what we have to do from here on if we want to make it to the A-10 [Championships.]”
Even though the Colonials (4-5-4, 1-2-2 Atlantic 10) trailed by two in the second half, the game was evenly matched throughout, with the teams combining to create a steady back-and-forth pace. Due to the game’s close play, head coach Tanya Vogel said she walked away from the defeat with a number of positives.
“It’s tough because sports are very results-oriented and so it’s hard not to focus on a win or a loss,” said GW head coach Tanya Vogel. “But I look at this as a great team effort… I think we forced Richmond into a situation where they had to score two great goals, and they did.”
Richmond, which is tied for third in the A-10, went up 1-0 on senior Jen Ruhe’s soaring goal that came from straightaway center and rose above the outstretched hands of leaping sophomore goalkeeper Lindsey Rowe.
The Spiders’ second goal came from sophomore Emily Dale, sailing past a diving Rowe and into the left side of the net.
After the game, Vogel praised her team’s resiliency in the face of the deficit.
“It’s very easy to go down 2-0 and fold but this team doesn’t have that in them,” she said. “They fought all the way through until the last minute. Richmond was scared to death at the end.”
GW now sits in 11th place in the 14-team A-10 with five points in conference play, with Saint Joseph’s and Saint Louis, currently tied for fifth, each having 10 points. If the Colonials are to grab one of the conference’s six postseason bids, they will likely need to start making up ground soon. Vogel said she is not worrying.
“I just look at it like we’ve got six games left,” she said. “We’ve got plenty of opportunities to win and get enough points to qualify.”
The Colonials, who have won once and drawn twice in their last five matches, will look to get back on the winning track next weekend with a pair of A-10 road games, beginning at Saint Louis Friday before traveling to Charlotte Sunday.