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UMass women’s soccer falls 2-0 to Stony Brook despite strong second half

(Collegian File Photo)

The Massachusetts women’s soccer team suffered its second straight loss to start the regular season on Friday, as it fell to Stony Brook 2-0, at Rudd Field.

After a slow start to the contest, a strong second half effort on offense wouldn’t be enough for the Minutewomen (0-2-0) Friday afternoon.

A pair of goals from the Sea Wolves (2-1-0) along with a 10-0 shot advantage to start the match, were enough to put the game away early.

This marks the second time in as many games UMass has been shutout.

Rachel Florenz tallied the first marker for Stony Brook in the seventh minute. After corralling a defensive zone turnover from the Minutewomen, Florenz fired a shot past UMass senior goalkeeper Cassidy Babin, to give the Sea Wolves an early 1-0 advantage.

12 minutes later, Chelsea Deponte scored a tap in goal following a nice move around Babin, who was far out of her box, doubling Stony Brooks lead to 2-0.

Despite the shutout loss, the Minutewomen did see some positives arise past the initial 45 minutes.

After failing to produce a single shot of any kind in the first, UMass came out of halftime and let off a barrage of scoring opportunities on the Stony Brook goal.

Of the twelve shots the Minutewomen sent to the cage, four of them were on net and forced Sea Wolves goalkeeper Sofia Manner to make multiple quality stops.

But the opposing defense from Stony Brook stood strong, and combined with four saves from Manner, the Sea Wolves prevented UMass from climbing back into the match.

Freshman Kelly Marra led the Minutewomen with two shots on goal, while senior Gabriella Kenyon and sophomore Sini Laaksonen each registered one.

UMass ended up out-shooting Stony Brook 12-11 after 90 minutes and also took six corner-kicks compared to just four for the Sea Wolves.

Kenyon, last year’s leading scorer, returned to the pitch Friday for the Minutewomen, since suffering a broken nose during exhibition play that kept her out of last week’s opener against Central Connecticut State.

In the 86th minute, a quality scoring chance off a header from Kenyon sailed right past the Stony Brook net.

Babin played the game’s entire 90 minutes and made three saves.

In her senior campaign with the team, Babin’s save percentage through two matches sits at 0.706 percent.

UMass will look to carry what it saw in the second half of Friday’s match into Sunday, when it returns to action to host the visiting Vanderbilt Commodores (1-1-0).

Kickoff is scheduled for 12 p.m. at Rudd Field.

Head coach Ed Matz was unavailable for comment after Friday’s match.

Liam Flaherty can be reached at lpflaherty@umass.edu and followed on Twitter @_LiamFlaherty.

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