By: Matt Doherty
Just ten months ago, the Boston University Women’s Soccer Team celebrated on Nickerson Field following an 89th minute goal from freshman Chelsea Churchill that captured a third consecutive Patriot League Title and NCAA Tournament appearance.
Flash forward to now: The Terriers are a mere distant self from their 2015 championship team sitting at 0-9, but on Sunday, they had a chance to rekindle that magic in a rematch of last year’s Patriot League Title game against Bucknell.
This time though, the results differed, with Bucknell knocking off BU 2-0, leaving the Terriers still winless on the season.
The Bison (7-0-1, 1-0 PL)) struck first on their home field when Gabi Rosenfeld crossed the ball into the BU box. Maddie Mulford’s shot was initially blocked by a Terrier defender but the junior stuck with it and sent her second attempt into the back of the net. The goal marked the tenth consecutive game that the opposing team has scored first against BU.
Despite the early deficit, the Terriers battled hard as usual, especially in the second half. BU dominated in the latter half outshooting Bucknell 11-4 and winning the corner kick battle 5-2. The Terriers onslaught was outdone by Bison senior goalie Jessica Ratner who recorded her 19th career shutout on seven saves.
BU forward Christina Wakefield created a flurry of opportunities for the equalizer. In the 62nd minute, Wakefield had a shot from 10 yards out that required a leaping save from Ratner. About 15 minutes later, Wakefield nearly scored again off a header from a beautiful cross by Rachel Bloznalis but Ratner dove to preserve the shutout.
Arguably BU’s best opportunity came in the 72nd minute but as the ball trickled across the goal line, Bucknell’s Kendall Ham knocked the ball away.
The second half summed up BU’s offensive struggles to date, as the Terriers created many opportunities but simply couldn’t get the ball in the net. The Terriers’ goal per game average dropped to a minuscule 0.2.
Bucknell added a counter attack goal with 11 seconds left when Ham found Alexis Gannon but the 2-0 score doesn’t do justice to how close the contest actually was.
After Thursday’s defeat to Northeastern, Coach Feldman discussed how a “sliver” has decided outcomes of games, and once again on Sunday, the Terriers came within inches of breaking through.
Another tough luck loss puts BU at (0-10, 0-1 PL) on the season. The win marked the first time Bucknell has ever beaten Boston University and was the Terriers first conference loss since October of 2014.
BU will look to rebound on Saturday afternoon when they host American University in their first Patriot League home game of the year. Kick off is scheduled for 1 PM at Nickerson Field.