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Sunday, Sep 18, 2016 at 6:30 pm

Syracuse Ties #20 Notre Dame in Double Overtime

By Nick Petraccione SYRACUSE, N.Y. — Syracuse women’s soccer opened up ACC play with a draw against 20th ranked Notre Dame in double overtime
1-1.

It was a quiet game up until the 33rd minute, when Syracuse earned a corner and drove the ball into the box. Stephanie Skilton headed it towards goal, but Notre Dame keeper Kaela Little got a hand on it. Syracuse’s Eva Gordon was right in front of the net for the rebound goal to put the Orange up.

The two teams went into the locker room with Syracuse up 1-0. But the Fighting Irish wouldn’t be held scoreless for long: in the 52nd minute, Taylor Klawunder scored on a Notre Dame corner tying the game.

After regulation, there were two 10-minute overtimes. Both teams had their chances, including Notre Dame who hit the right post, but both failed to score.

Even though the scoreboard says Syracuse drew a tie, head coach Phil Wheddon says this was a big game for them.

“This is our first game against a top-twenty team,” said Wheddon. “It gives the team a little bit of belief that they can compete…And a point in the ACC is massive.”

But the Orange isn’t getting complacent just because they tied a nationally ranked team.

“When we start every game, we expect to win,” said junior forward Eva Gordon. “I wouldn’t say we are happy with the result, but it’s better than a loss. I wish we won, but a tie is better than a loss.”

Coming into today’s game, the theme was to keep their pace of play up. Gordon stressed that aspect after their win against Buffalo, and today Wheddon hollered it from the sidelines.

In the first half, Wheddon said he was pleased with the way his team was moving the ball, but in the second half he said his team fell off, allowing Notre Dame to tie the game.

Having a quick speed of play, only taking one or two touches on the ball, is key for Syracuse’s offense. It allows them to make the defense move and lets their forwards attack the net.

Keeping up a high speed of play for 90-minutes has been difficult for this team at points. Syracuse said its pace was better today, but needs to be improved on as better opponents come their way.

Syracuse’s next matchup is Thursday September 22nd, when they head to Clemson to take on the Tigers at 7pm.