PHILADELPHIA – The University of Pennsylvania women’s soccer team tied Saint Francis (Pa.) on Thursday night at Rhodes Field, 1-1. The Quakers moved to 2-0-1 on the young season.
Penn was slow to start, but held a lead for more than 20 minutes in the second half before the Red Flash knotted things up. Neither team was able to break the deadlock in overtime.
Katherine Myhre got the start in goal for the second straight match, but it wasn’t until Kalijah Terilli came on for the second half that either goalie was tested. Terilli was forced to stuff Brittany Hasson after she got the ball behind the Penn defense for a 1-on-1 breakaway.
After an hour that could only be described as desultory, Ana Chevtchenko stunned everyone by scoring the game’s first goal. After Lindsey Sawczuk worked to win a 50/50 ball, she pushed it to Chevtchenko who turned and fired a left-footed shot from about 25 yards out that caught SFPA goalkeeper Romina Kunze completely off guard. The shot went over Kunze but under the crossbar, and Penn suddenly had a 1-0 lead.
It looked like that goal might be enough, until Saint Francis’ Siobhan Bross performed her own stunning stunt. Bross got the ball about 25 yards directly out, was able to fend off a Penn defender, and rocketed a left-footed shot that had Terilli futilely diving to her left.
Clara Midgley had a great opportunity to put the Quakers back on top in regulation, getting the ball just behind the Red Flash defense. However, with a defender riding her from the right, and Kunze closing quickly, the senior pushed a shot high over the crossbar.
Penn had a great chance early in the second overtime, when Olivia Blaber played a nice cross from the right side that Sawczuk found just outside the far post. Her diving effort was just wide. Then, with the clock winding down to its final seconds, Saint Francis’ Eloa Nascimento was left alone in front, but her shot from about 20 yards went well over Terilli’s head.
Penn sat a number of its top players on Thursday night; Erin Mikolai and Tahirih Nesmith did not dress, while Caroline Dwyer sat the rest of the night after playing just 23 minutes.
Penn returns to action on Sunday, again at home, when the Quakers host William & Mary at 2:30 p.m.
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