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No. 15 Rutgers women’s soccer surrenders late goal to CCSU as season ends

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The Scarlet Knights suffer first round loss in NCAA Tournament

Rich Graessle/Rutgers Athletics

After finishing in second place in the Big Ten for a second consecutive season and making the NCAA Tournament as a four seed, the program’s eighth straight appearance, the no. 15 Rutgers women’s soccer team suffered an upset loss at home on Friday night to CCSU. It was scoreless until the very end in the 88th minute when Erica Bardes sent a cross from the left side of the box that went in the top right corner of the net for the game winning goal.

Rutgers dominated the game, holding a 18-6 shot advantage and a 11-2 edge with shots on goal, as well as a 10-1 advantage in corner kicks. The best chance to score came in the 71st minute when the Scarlet Knights were awarded a penalty kick but missed. They had several other good opportunities as well, but they couldn’t deliver. It was a disappointing night for one of the best athletic programs at Rutgers.

CCSU avenged a season opening loss to Rutgers in overtime by the score of 2-1. All-American Amirah Ali scored both goals that night but on Friday she had 5 shots, 3 of which were on net, but couldn’t find the back of the net. Credit CCSU goalkeeper Amanda McQuillan who made 11 saves in the game.

After three starters missed the second half of the Big Ten semifinals last week due to injury, Shea Holland and Nneka Moneme played all 90 minutes on Friday, while Chantelle Swaby did not play.

The senior class finished their Rutgers careers with a 51-15-19 record overall and 25-7-12 in Big Ten play, as well as postseason appearances in both the conference and NCAA Tournaments all four years. Taylor Aylmer finished 8th all-time in program history with 17 assists.

RU finishes the 2019 season with a 15-4-1 overall record and 8-2-1 in Big Ten play. They are one of only two Rutgers Athletics programs to ever finish in second place in the Big Ten and the only to do it more than once, as well as in back to back seasons. The 15 wins are the third most in program history and the team has posted 11 or more wins in eight straight seasons, all of which resulted in NCAA Tournament appearances. Unfortunately, the season ended short of the program’s first ever Big Ten title and with a second consecutive first round exit from the NCAA Tournament.