Women's Soccer loses to JU 1-0


Despite a few good saves and some strong plays the UNF women’s soccer team made Oct. 19, they fell to their cross-town rival Jacksonville University 1-0 during the fifth year of the SunTrust River City Rumble.

During the opening minute of the match, UNF sophomore defender Samantha Keyes tried to deflect an attack from the Dolphins. However, the ball reached the back of another defender, and JU’s midfielder and forward Eva Leeper countered with a shot just 10 yards away from the goal.

“We started the game off really well but gave up a goal in the 39th second,” women’s soccer head coach Linda Hamilton said. “After that, we had to fight the rest of the game to win it back.”

JU made another attempt on goal later in the first half as they ran three on two against the Ospreys down the field. UNF’s senior goalkeeper Rachael Howard responded with her first save of the night and stopped a ball directed by Leeper to the top left corner of the goal.

“We came out in the second half really well,” Hamilton said. “Kristin Rhodes played some really great soccer, and Howard showed a lot leadership and made some really great saves.”

Senior midfielder for the Ospreys, Kristin Rhodes, tried to even the score in the fifth minute as she crossed the ball to freshman forward Michele Larrinaga, but JU’s defenders blocked the attack.

Rhodes attempted two more shots on goal during the second half, forcing JU’s goalie to block a couple shots after zero saves in the first half. Rhodes’ shots were two of four total shots that reached JU’s goalkeeper Alexa Rooney. 

All were unsuccessful attempts on goal for the Ospreys.

Other Osprey offensive players added pressure to the match as they tried to make their shots on goal, but none were enough to penetrate the Dolphin’s defense.

Sophomore forward and midfielder Denise Soltero attempted a drive for the goal after another cross from Rhodes. The ball came back at Soltero after JU’s goalkeeper came out of the net, giving her another chance to score, but Rooney grabbed the ball off Soltero’s foot before she could attempt the shot.

In the final two minutes of the match, senior forward Katelin Swift got the ball to Larrinaga for one of many opportunities to score on behalf to the Ospreys in the last seconds of the game. Larrinaga, however, was off balance after the cross and was unable to attack the Dolphins.

With less than 10 seconds left on the clock, Rhodes made one final attempt to tie the match off a corner kick, but again Rooney blocked the shot.

“We’re missing that final piece, and we need to work on finishing the game,” Hamilton said.

UNF will be back on the field for their A-Sun match against Lipscomb Oct. 23 at 5 p.m. and their Oct. 25 game against Belmont at 1 p.m.