MT. PLEASANT, S.C. – The College of Charleston women’s soccer team fell, 2-1, at the hands of Western Michigan at Patriots Point on Friday night.
The game, originally scheduled to be played in Conway, S.C., but relocated due to weather, saw the Cougars get off to a sluggish start and fall behind by a two-goal deficit. CofC would recover and become the more offensive team in the latter parts of the second half, but the comeback effort ultimately fell short as the Cougars were handed their second loss of the season.
“Western Michigan is a very good team,” said head coach Christian Michner. “We were comprehensively beat in every facet of the game tonight. You have to give them credit for going on the road, then going further on the road, and really pushing us around.
“We really need to figure out how we’re going to respond. It was 80 poor minutes from us and then maybe 10 or 11 good minutes at the end when we put some things together and scored a wonderful goal. It just took us too long to respond. At this level, you have to compete for 90 minutes or you’re going to come out on the wrong end of a lot of results.”
After being held without a shot attempt in the opening period, the Cougars wedged themselves back into the match and narrowed the shot balance to a more-manageable 9-8 deficit in the second period.
WMU first found the net in the 29th minute when Aubrey Sudomier made a run from the right corner along the endline and fired a crossing attempt across the goal mouth where Rachel Chaney made a sliding volley into the upper netting.
The Cougars weathered the attack through the remainder of the first half but in the 52nd minute, WMU sent a long free kick into the box from the middle of the field. Cougar goalkeeper Taylor Avery (Clifton, Va.) looked to handle the initial threat but the ball ungraciously fell ungraciously fell to the feet of Kylie Nylen who found herself alone in front of the gaping goal.
CofC found its urgency in the final minutes of the match and found a way to move their possessions into the offensive end. They broke through in the 88th minute when Sarah Cardamone (Downingtown, Pa.) played a brilliant ball through the middle of the pitch to an in-stride McCallie Jones (Charlotte, N.C.) who cleverly shot across her body to beat the off-balance goalkeeper.
“Towards the end we got higher pressure up the field and turned the ball over and allowed ourselves to get into some better positions,” said Michner. “We are a very good attacking team. We create chances and move off the ball well. For a team to shut us out in shots in the first period is very impressive. We weren’t cut throat enough on our field and that’ll be something we look at moving forward.”
The Cougars are off a full week before returning to action on Friday, Aug. 31 when they cross town to face rival Charleston Southern at 4 p.m.