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No. 8 Rutgers women’s soccer defeats No. 16 Michigan 4-1

The Scarlet Knights continued their impressive start in Big Ten play as they sit alone atop the standings.

Riley Tiernan scored and had two assists in the win over Michigan.
Rutgers Athletics/Steve Hockstein

The No. 8 Rutgers women’s soccer team won its sixth consecutive game on Wednesday with an impressive 4-1 victory over No. 16 Michigan (8-2-3; 2-1-1). In a battle of the last two unbeaten teams in the Big Ten, the Scarlet Knights moved to 5-0 in conference play and sit atop the league standings with 15 points. They are now 10-2-0 overall this season and are 2-1 against ranked foes.

Riley Tiernan scored and had two assists, Frankie Tagliaferri had a goal and an assist, while Amirah Ali and Gabby Provenzano scored as well.

Rutgers took the lead in the 26th minute as Tiernan took a short pass off a corner and drove into the box, finding Kylie Daigle who then directed the ball to a wide open Provenzano for the one timer.

Michigan tied the score in the 35th minute off a free kick from Hannah Blake for her third goal of the season.

With the score still tied ten minutes into the second half, Tagliaferri sent a long pass across midfield that Tiernan tracked down, beat a defender for the ball and then scored on a low shot on a short angle for the decisive goal in the game.

In the 81st minute, Ali put the game out of reach with a perfectly placed penalty kick to give Rutgers a 3-1 lead.

Rutgers poured it on as Tiernan found Tagliaferri for a late goal in the 85th minute to secure the 4-1 victory.

Rutgers is the first team to post three or more goals over Michigan this season. The Scarlet Knights held a 16-7 shot advantage and 8-3 edge with shots on goal in the game. They also held a 4-2 advantage with corners. RU has now held 40 straight opponents to single-digit shots on goal dating back to the 2019 season. Goalkeeper Meagan McClelland made two saves in the win.

“I’m just so proud of this team. There’s fight, there’s grit. We talked about Jersey pride. We don’t quit. We knew from the start that it was gonna be a battle. Two undefeated teams left in the Big Ten. We knew that we wanted to come out on top. You could see we put in all the work and there was no one who was stopping us today,” said senior captain Gabby Provenzano.

“We were tied at half, then we came out strong. We got one goal and it kept rolling from there. The momentum we had and always supporting each other. We always want the best for our team, we will do anything for our team so I feel that is why we keep rolling,” said senior captain Amirah Ali.

Rutgers scored as many as four goals in a conference game for the first time since they defeated Minnesota 4-1 in the Big Ten quarterfinals in 2015. The offense has been extremely balanced this season with thirteen different players scoring and fifteen players having assisted on a goal.

Tagliaferri leads the Scarlet Knights with 10 goals and 26 points, while Tiernan leads the team with 7 assists and is second with 15 points. Ali is third on the team with 13 points.

RU will next face Iowa at Yurcak Field on Sunday, October 10 at noon. The Hawkeyes are 8-4-1 and 2-3-0 in Big Ten play. Rutgers has won the previous three meetings against Iowa.