Massachusetts Daily Collegian

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

Massachusetts Daily Collegian

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

Massachusetts Daily Collegian

UMass women’s soccer ties St. Bonaventure 0-0

Minutewomen celebrate Senior Day
Matt Skillings
Daily Collegian (2023)

The Massachusetts women’s soccer team tied St. Bonaventure 0-0 on Sunday afternoon at Rudd Field. Celebrating their 11 seniors, the Minutewomen (7-3-4, 4-1-2 Atlantic 10) couldn’t crack the scoresheet despite a last-ditch effort at the end.

In the final five minutes, UMass had its best opportunity of the game when a streaking Caroline Dickson chased a pass from her own half of the field as she sped towards the Bonnies (3-4-6, 2-2-2 A-10) net. Dickson and St. Bonaventure goaltender Chiara Gottinger ran head on at each other as the ball rolled between them. Dickson got her foot on the ball before Gottinger could, but Gottinger stuck her leg up at the last second and got a piece of Dickson’s shot, saving the game for St. Bonaventure.

Gottinger was the star of the game for the Bonnies, making six saves on the afternoon and keeping her team in the game when UMass had plenty of chances to score.

“It’s just more about finishing,” head coach Jason Dowiak said. “We had our chances, but sometimes we probably could’ve created more chances with some more quality at the end. We got better final moments in the second half, but the finish is just what lacked in the second half.”

The Minutewomen had 15 shots to six from St. Bonaventure, while they took eight corners to just one from the Bonnies. The opportunities were there, but the finishing was not.

Bella Mendoza picked up her sixth shutout of the season, though she only had to make one save. A senior, she remains tied for first place in the A-10 in shutouts.

For the players celebrating their senior days, Sunday marked the second to last time they will lace up at Rudd Field. The senior influence is crucial for this team’s success. Among the 11 players graduating, Mendoza, Hannah Peric, Grace Pinkus, Ella Curry and more are starters and important contributors for the Minutewomen.

“Senior day is always a really emotional day,” Dowiak said. “We’re such a close group, it’s a family, and with that emotion comes highs and lows in the game that sometimes you don’t expect.”

“They’ve been through a lot with us and to be able to get nine of the 11 in the game, the only two that were unable to play were [Megan Olzewski] and [Karina Groff] but they were unbelievable on the sideline, just being great voices,” he added. “The other nine stepped up, all of them played well today so that’s awesome to see.”

Although UMass came away with an important A-10 point, Dowiak emphasized that he felt like it was a game that could have been won.

“That’s a tough one to let go,” Dowiak said. “We created a lot of chances and we’re really proud of those opportunities that we created.  The Bonnies played really well, they battled, and their goalkeeper stood on her head a few times.”

The Minutewomen have their toughest test of the season waiting for them on Thursday when they take on No. 24 St. Louis on the road. The Billikens are undefeated in conference play and hold a strong record of 9-2-2 overall. A win or tie for UMass would give them a head up on St. Louis with the A-10 tournament looming nearer and nearer.

Kickoff in St. Louis is set for 8 p.m. and can be streamed on ESPN+.

Matt Skillings can be reached at [email protected] and followed on Twitter @matt_skillings.

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