Women’s soccer capped their season with a draw at home Sunday afternoon.
The Colonials (3-12-3, 3-6-1 A-10) mustered a 1-1 result after double overtime against the Wildcats (4-10-4, 0-7-3 A-10). Despite jumping out to an early lead, the Colonials could not find a second goal to put the game away. Head coach Michelle Demko said the team made a conscious effort to be in the “driver’s seat” and set the tempo of the game, emphasizing the first fifteen minutes as a time to apply pressure on the Wildcats.
“We did a really good job in terms of coming out really strong and you felt that energy and the speed of play and the movement off the ball,” Demko said. “So it was very evident and visible to see that type of display offensively.”
The Colonials outshot the Wildcats 23-9, 12 of which were on frame. Graduate student midfielder Kelly Amador led the team with five shots and a goal in her final match donning the buff and blue and Davidson freshman goalkeeper Emily Smith racked up 11 saves in a busy afternoon in net.
The first good chance of the match fell to junior midfielder Isabelle Eskay in the 12th minute. Freshman defender Summer Beesley played a cross in and Smith swatted the ball away. It fell to Danyko-Kulchycky on the endline, who played the ball across the face of goal to Eskay, who took a left-footed shot that hit the side netting.
The Colonials broke through on a header in the 16th minute from Amador. After winning the ball in the midfield, Amador played it to Eskay. Eskay then found Danyko-Kulchycky out wide to the left, who created space between herself and a Davidson defender off the dribble and curled a right-footed cross in toward Amador, who redirected back across the face off the net for her fifth goal of the season.
Davidson tried to equalize soon after in the 20th minute when sophomore midfielder Riley Patton fired a shot low and to the right side. Senior goalkeeper Erica Lorenzana parried it wide out for a Davidson corner kick.
After a back and forth remainder of the half, GW went into the break with a 1-0 lead.
Just four minutes into the second half, senior defender Madi Coyne had a headed attempt hit the post off a corner kick from senior midfielder Beth Ellinport. Fifteen seconds later, Danyko-Kulchycky again created space for herself and chipped the ball back into the box. Amador headed it past the backline and Coyne was at the doorstep to smash it home, but the goal was disallowed for offside despite Coyne actually being in an onside position at the time of Amador’s header.
In the 55th minute, Davidson struck on the counter thanks to junior midfielder Hannah Casey. Senior forward Kendall Bushick played a long ball over the top of the Colonial backline and Casey snuck in behind with a run. After letting the ball take a few bounces, Casey teed up a half volley strike and rifled the ball to the far post past Lorenzana.
“We’ve had moments early in the season where there’s been a major energy drop after conceding a goal and even though we couldn’t come back with a second goal, I didn’t see that energy drop and that’s a major improvement for us,” Amador said.
Seven minutes later, freshman forward Aleia Gisolfi-McCready drove toward the endline and played a cross in for junior forward Remi White. White’s shot was blocked 8 yards away from the net by Eskay.
In the 69th minute, Amador played a through ball to freshman midfielder Amelia Booth, who was streaking in on goal. Davidson senior defender Sam Cascio rushed across the box to poke it out for a corner kick before Booth could trigger a shot. On the ensuing corner kick, Eskay played a low ball into the path of Booth, whose shot forced a save from Smith and a scramble in front of the net before the ball was eventually cleared.
In the final three minutes of regulation senior midfielder Maria Pareja played a cross in as Amador and Smith both went up for the ball and missed it. In the midst of the confusion, Eskay played the ball back across goal but Davidson managed to clear and avoid the danger. The teams remained level at 1-1 at the end of normal time.
Five minutes into overtime, Amador worked her way behind the defense and forced junior defender Cecie Bassett into poking the ball back to her goalkeeper, who attempted to clear the ball to the edge of the box. Pareja intercepted the clearance and played the ball to freshman midfielder Alicia Window at the top of the box, who hit the ball in stride to force another save by Smith.
The Wildcats got a chance less than a minute later through another run by Gisolfi-McCready, this time down the left wing. The Wildcats forward got to the endline and played a ball across the face of goal on the ground intended for White, but it was cut out and cleared away by freshman defender Maggie Mockenhaupt.
The Colonials end the year with just three wins in A-10 play and a winless non-conference slate after being ranked No. 4 in the A-10 preseason coaches poll. Despite finishing as the eleventh seed and failing to make the tournament, GW closes the season with a three game undefeated streak.
Amador said she was proud of the way the team turned their season around in the latter half and is excited to see what the team does next year despite missing the tournament in her final season.
“I’m super proud of the team for how we responded to every single game and how we responded to our record because it’s obviously frustrating to drop game after game,” Amador said. “But you wouldn’t have known it most days walking out to practice and in the locker room for a game, you wouldn’t have known it.”