Women's Soccer Defeats Maine 4-1 on Senior Day
Score: UAlbany 4, Maine 1
Location: Tom & Mary Casey Stadium in Albany, N.Y.
Records: UAlbany (8-5-3, 5-1-1 AE); Maine (5-8-1, 1-6-1 AE)
Short story: UAlbany uses a big first half to knock off Maine on senior day in the final home game of the regular season.
- Kendra Harbinger scored one goal and recorded one assist
- Meghan Cavanaugh scored her third goal of the season
- Leah Pais scored twice
- UAlbany outshot Maine 29-9
- UAlbany drew nine corner kicks to Maine’s one
- Maine goalkeeper Kira Kutzinski recorded seven saves
Coach Bochette: “I was really happy with the way we pushed forward in the game. We had some things to figure out with the shape of our back four but we adapted well in the flow of the game. We were really happy with how the players approached their business tonight, including the fact that we continued to create chances and control most of the game. Maine caught us out on the counter-attack for their goal, and they finished really well. It was a good goal, against their flow of play, because we had been attacking so well to start. Our response to that was really good, picking ourselves up and keeping our foot on the gas, which we haven’t always done this season.”
Harbinger: “We’ve been practicing set pieces a lot, just one after another, and I’ve become more confident taking them in games. I felt like Maine’s goal was my fault, and I wanted to do something for the team to make up for it. I tried to put my shot on target, and my teammates made great runs, and it worked out. We got into our rhythm after that first goal and started creating more chances and we were able to come out with a win.”
Cavanaugh: “It was nice to leave the field on a good note today. I’ve struggled to finish in recent games, so it was nice to get out of my head and find the back of the net, so hopefully that can continue. We have a lot more work to do so we’re going to keep working hard. Every time we play together we gain more confidence, and I think going into Vermont to end the season we’re feeling pretty good, and this win just made it feel better.”
Pais: “When we scored the third goal it showed we were more confident finishing in the final third, and we were able to get another step ahead of Maine. We had a lot of determination to put the game away at that point. Scoring twice feels good, but it feels better to send off our seniors with a victory as a thank you for all they’ve done for my fellow freshmen and me and for all the hard work they’ve put into this program.”
Playing in the final home game of the 2019 regular season, the University at Albany women’s soccer team honored its seven seniors on the roster to the tune of a 4-1 victory over the visiting Maine Black Bears.
In a brief pregame ceremony, UAlbany’s seven seniors on the 2019 roster, Shannon Bonner, Gina Bracamonte, Adriana Carreno, Meghan Cavanaugh, Kimberly Dieroff, Katie Gowing, and Claire Stackel, were recognized for their contributions to the women’s soccer team throughout their careers.
“It’s been an incredibly successful senior class, and they’ve brought so many things to this program from their freshman year all the way through,” said head coach Nick Bochette. “They got here at the start of our competitive renaissance, if you will, and it was their dedication, and the legacy that they will leave, that leaves us in a very different position as a program from when they arrived. They had the faith in this program to see what it could be. It’s a diverse group, a large group, and one we have a whole lot of appreciation for, and we’re certainly hoping to continue building from where this senior class has brought us.”
UAlbany drew four corner kicks in the first four minutes of the game, but each attempt came away empty. Maine ultimately scored first, finding a gap in the UAlbany defense in transition in the seventh minute, despite the offensive pressure the Danes had put on early.
In the 10th minute, Kendra Harbinger scored her second goal in as many games, finding the back of the net off a 25-yard free kick. Harbinger’s goal against Maine, and her goal in the previous game against UMass Lowell, both came off of set pieces.
Harbinger struck again one minute later, setting up Cavanaugh for a header to put UAlbany up 2-1. It was Cavanaugh’s first goal since September 22 against Hartford in the 2019 America East opener. Soon after, Leah Pais scored in the 13th minute to complete the scoring barrage and put the Danes up 3-1.
UAlbany entered the break leading by the same score. The Great Danes had outshot the Black Bears 11-5 in the first 45 minutes and had taken six shots on goal. Further, UAlbany drew six corner kicks in the first half, while Maine drew none.
Early in the second half, Maine had a chance to cut their deficit to one. Pushing the ball deep into the UAlbany box, the Black Bears attack forced UAlbany goalkeeper Sophia Chen off her line to cut off the play. Maine played the ball into the middle, catching Chen out of the net, but Maine’s shot was sent away cleanly by Harbinger, backup up Chen in front of the goal.
UAlbany created several more chances, including a sequence late in the second half where Cavanaugh’s close shot ricocheted to Jada Colbert, whose shot in front of an open net sailed high.
In the 72nd minute, Pais drew a foul in the Maine box and scored the ensuing penalty kick. It was Pais’ first game having scored multiple goals, and her second successful pentalty kick this season.
With 10 minutes remaining in the game, head coach Nick Bochette emptied his bench, allowing for all seven seniors honored during the pregame ceremony to take the field at the same time. The seniors ended the game on the field together, with UAlbany claiming a 4-1 victory.
UAlbany finished the game holding a 29-9 shooting advantage over Maine, outshooting the Black Bears 11-5 in the first half and 18-4 in the second. UAlbany also drew nine corner kicks, while Maine managed just one.
Up next: The Great Danes visit Vermont on Thursday, October 31 for their regular season finale. The America East Tournament begins Sunday, November 3.