The Student News Site of Quinnipiac University

The Quinnipiac Chronicle

The Student News Site of Quinnipiac University

The Quinnipiac Chronicle

The Student News Site of Quinnipiac University

The Quinnipiac Chronicle

Quinnipiac women’s soccer finds first win of 2023 over Drexel

Aidan Sheedy
Senior goalkeeper Sofia Lospinoso made seven saves en route to the Bobcats’ first game of the year.

HAMDEN, Conn. – Quinnipiac women’s soccer defeated the Drexel Dragons 2-1 in a highly entertaining match Friday afternoon, giving the Bobcats their first win of the 2023 regular season. 

The Dragons looked like they were going to take an early lead in the second minute, but Bobcats’ senior goalkeeper Sofia Lospinoso established the intensity and shut it down, both with her hands and with her voice. 

“Quiet teams don’t win games,” Quinnipiac head coach Dave Clarke said. “I want Sofia to tell the players in front of her what to do.”

Just two minutes later, junior defender Talie Lyon broke the seal with a well-placed shot off the left post and into the back of the net. With the dark cloud of being scoreless through the first two games finally evaporated, Quinnipiac could relax and play its style of soccer. 

The Bobcats controlled the midfield all day, making it difficult for Drexel to break out into the attacking third. From the opening whistle, the host’s passing was crisp, as through balls were finding their way past the Dragons’ defense at will.  

“We don’t defend man-to-man,” Clarke said. “We defend, we split gaps. You have to be able to do more than one job. I want them to do two or three different things at once.”

For most of the first half, it seemed like both teams were evenly matched, but as halftime approached, the Bobcats turned it up. Quinnipiac rifled off four close shots as time was expiring, but Drexel didn’t take kindly to this.

In the 43rd minute, Lospinoso made two clutch saves on Dragons fifth-year forward Isabel Kuzy and senior defender Laila Payton to keep her team ahead. 

“The emotion pumps everyone up, especially in those final minutes,” Lospinoso said. “Bodies on the line is our motto. You’re getting the ball, or I’m getting the ball.”At halftime, the Bobcats had the 1-0 advantage, but Drexel was not going away easily. The Dragons tried to come out strong to start the next half, hoping to regain some of that momentum back. Quinnipiac had other plans.

Two minutes into the second half, a Drexel turnover in the defensive zone allowed senior forward Courtney Chochol to set up graduate forward Lily Schnieders. In what was her first Quinnipiac start, the transfer blasted the ball past Drexel senior goalkeeper Molly Piso. 

“We needed that momentum, one hundred percent,” Schnieders said. “We really needed that to boost our confidence.” 

“Lily had a great preseason,” Clarke added. “I’m glad it found its way into the back of the net.”

The Dragons would not take lightly to the second goal, as intense play began to ramp up. Both squads were called on a combined 28 fouls during the contest, and  a yellow card was assessed to Bobcats graduate midfielder Markela Bejleri in the 53rd minute. 

Eventually, Drexel was able to capitalize on an opportunity in the 79th minute. Graduate forward Annalena O’Reilly tucked one in tight on the left post, past the outstretched reach of Lospinoso. 

The Dragons pushed to equalize the contest — even allowing Piso to abandon her goal and enter the box for an 89th minute free kick. Fortunately for the home fans, the Bobcats were able to nix any scoring chances from the opposition and hold on to grab an all-important first win of the season. 

Quinnipiac looks to continue its winning ways in Hamden with a Sept. 4 matchup against Stonehill. Kickoff is set for 2 p.m.

Leave a Comment
More to Discover
About the Contributor
Aidan Sheedy
Aidan Sheedy, Photography Editor

Comments (0)

All The Quinnipiac Chronicle Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *