Syracuse Falls to Delaware 1-0 to Open 2023 Season

Thursday, Aug 17, 2023 at 9:15 pm by Sports Editor

By Hudson Ridley | @Hudson_Ridley

In a game dictated by Syracuse’s slow start, the Orange couldn’t put together enough offense to surmount an early deficit, falling to Delaware, 1-0.

SU had a large share of the possession through the first five minutes, with good passing putting the Blue Hens back on their heels. That’s when the home side found a flaw in the Orange’s game plan. The ‘Cuse had been slow early on to defend the counter-attack and Delaware midfielder Lea Panagiotidis took advantage by making a run deep into the box and whipping in a cross. Senior Raychel Speicher was all over it on the receiving end, slotting away the volley to give the Hens the lead in the sixth minute.

From there the playing field would level. Syracuse looked a lot more lively in midfield but struggled to create real scoring chances for Erin Flurey throughout the game. Fleury would take matters into her own hands, firing a few long-distance shots in an attempt to catch both goalkeepers that Delaware used off balance.

The deciding factor in the match ended up being the physicality and versatility of Lea Panagiotidis. The 5’9 senior created plenty of solo runs and chances with her play down the right wing in the first half. She then shifted to an almost backline defensive roll in the second half as the Blue Hens parked the bus.

The good news for SU is that both Erin Flurey and Shea Vanderbosch looked excellent in their 2023 debuts. Fleury showed off tremendous shot power on a few long-distance looks while Vanderbosch made five saves and dealt with tough shots comfortably. 

The Orange didn’t fare too well on the road last season finishing with an away record of 2-4-1. Compare that to a 6-3-2 home record and it’s easy to see where the ‘Cuse feel the most comfortable. Syracuse returns to SU Soccer Stadium in a week from today to face Auburn. However, between now and then the Orange will have another road test against the Saints of Siena on August 20th. 

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