Storrs, Conn. (October 25, 2012) – Despite a career-high 12 saves by senior goalkeeper Emmy Simpkins (Concord, N.C.), the Rutgers women’s soccer team (12-7-1) fell to Connecticut (9-7-2) in the first round of the BIG EAST Tournament on Thursday night at Morrone Stadium.
Senior Maura McLaughlin (Robbinsville, N.J.) posted her second career score for the Scarlet Knights, but it would not be enough as the Huskies tallied two first-half goals and added an insurance score in the 81st minute.
Connecticut struck first in the 13th minute, as Andrea Plucenik dished to a cutting Linda Ruutu down the left sideline. Ruutu connected to the bottom right of the net to give the Huskies an early 1-0 advantage.
The second Connecticut score came in the 31st minute off a corner kick. Plucenik crossed the ball into the box, where Gabrielle Charno headed the shot in from three yards out.
Rutgers brought the score within one in the 62nd minute, as McLaughlin posted her second in three matches. Senior April Price (Mechanicsville, Va.) started the play, bringing the ball up the far side of the field. The forward crossed the ball to the middle of the field, where redshirt junior Jonelle Filigno (Mississauga, ON, Canada) tipped it off to McLaughlin. The midfielder buried a shot to the UConn goalkeeper’s left.
UConn answered in the 81st minute on a strike from Riley Houle. After a diving save by Simpkins, the Husky midfielder corralled the rebound, blasting a shot from 40 yards out.
The best chance for RU in the first half came in fifth minute. Senior center back Shannon Woeller (Vancouver, Canada) took a free kick from 40 yards out, blasting a ball into the box. Filigno was able to get a head on it, sending the ball just high.
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