The Rutgers women's soccer team played to a 1-1 tie against North Carolina State on Thursday. It was the first road game of the season for the Scarlet Knights (1-1-1, 0-0-0), and the match continued their inconsistent start to the season.
Rutgers started its scoring more than 5 minutes into the match. Senior midfielder Sara Brocious whipped a cross into the box that found senior forward Allison Lowrey. Lowrey converted her shot just over the Wolfpack's (1-0-2, 0-0-0) goalkeeper Maria Echezarreta's outstretched hands. Graduate student defender Allison Lynch is also credited with an assist for setting up Brocious' cross.
The assist marked Brocious' 17th assist for the Knights, tying Carli Lloyd and Taylor Aylmer for the 10th-most in program history.
Lowrey had a strong day in front of goal, pacing Rutgers with two shots on goal. Graduate student forward Gia Vicari led the team with four shots attempted. Junior forward Riley Tiernan also took 3 shots, 1 being on goal.
The Knights were able to hold North Carolina State scoreless for most of the game, but with just barely 3 minutes to play, Annika Wohner headed the ball into the net off a corner kick, securing the draw for the Wolfpack. Mackenzie Smith lofted the ball into the middle of the box, and Wohner's header dribbled past everybody, including Rutgers' sophomore goalkeeper Olivia Bodmer.
It marked the second consecutive match where a goal scored within the last 3 minutes of the game cost the Knights a result. Against Hofstra four days before, the Pride (1-2, 0-0) also scored in the waning minutes to beat Rutgers at Yurcak Field on Busch campus.
Despite allowing the late goal, Bodmer and the Knights' back line continued their strong start to the season. Bodmer had a reflex save off another North Carolina State corner kick in the 66th minute, and the Wolfpack only managed three shots on goal during the game.
Rutgers took two more shots and one more shot on goal than North Carolina State, but the Knights did not attempt a corner kick during the entire game.
The match was also physical as five yellow cards were handed out, four to the Wolfpack and one to Rutgers. The Knights had seven fouls compared to North Carolina State's six fouls.
Rutgers' offense has yet to kick into high gear this season. After the Knights scored 2 goals in their season-opening win against Holy Cross, they scored just 1 goal in their last two games.
Head coach Mike O'Neill has boasted many strong defenses during his time on the Banks, but he will need to open up the offense for Rutgers to succeed this season.
The Knights return home to face Fairleigh Dickinson this Monday. The game will be broadcast on Big Ten Network+ and 88.7 WRSU-FM.
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