Sports

Bears blank URI in fifth shutout win of season

By
Sports Staff Writer
Friday, September 30, 2011

If defense really does win championships, then the women’s soccer team is on the right track. The Bears (6-2-1, 1-0-0 Ivy League) blanked the University of Rhode Island in Kingston Wednesday, earning their fifth shutout victory of the season. Bruno’s stalwart back line — led by Diana Ohrt ’13 — kept the Rams (5-4-1) at bay, and a late tally from Emily Wingrove ’14 propelled the Bears to their second consecutive win.

URI got off to an aggressive start, firing three shots in the first 17 minutes and forcing one save from Bears keeper Amber Bledsoe ’14.

“Their energy was pretty high initially,” said Ohrt. “That put us off a little bit.”

“We started off the first half a little slow,” said Wingrove. “They kind of played a funny formation, so we had some trouble readjusting to it. We didn’t really control the midfield at all, and they had some chances.”

Though the Rams recorded six shots to Bruno’s five, neither team was able to get on the score sheet before the end of the half.

“At halftime, coach made some adjustments. We went to more of a 4-4-2 and adjusted really well. We were able to control the midfield, create a lot more chances, and we really stopped their whole sense of attack,” Wingrove said.

Bruno almost broke the deadlock six minutes into the second half when a close-range shot from Kiersten Berg ’14 was parried away by the diving URI keeper. The Rams answered with a shot of their own five minutes later, but MC Barrett ’14 made one of three stops on the evening to keep the game level.

The Bears finally found the back of the net in the 76th minute. Mika Siegelman ’14 sent a through ball to the feet of Wingrove, who touched it to Briel Crespi ’15 in the middle. Crespi looked wide and found Louisa Pitney ’14, who struck a cross back into the center. Wingrove met the ball with her head and redirected it over the keeper to score her first goal of the season and the eventual game-winner.

Both teams had two more attempts to score before the game’s end, but the Bears’ defense could not be unlocked. Bruno came away with the shutout win as the final whistle blew.

“Our defensive unit is really strong because we are very cohesive and have good communication,” Ohrt said. “I, in particular, keep things organized, which is a big key, and our shape and organization is a big part of our success.”

The Bears face their second Ivy League opponent of the season Saturday at Columbia (3-5-0, 1-0-0). The team looks to continue its win streak to stay undefeated in league play.

“We know they’re a really strong and physical team, and they like to play long,” Wingrove said. “I think we’re confident. If we can finish our chances, we’ll hopefully pull through with the win.”