Syracuse Gets First ACC Win against Pitt
By Nick Petraccione
Syracuse women’s soccer records its first win over an ACC opponent this season after defeating Pittsburgh 1-0 on Sunday afternoon.
The Orange (8-5-3) are playing some of its best soccer of the season. Last week, it drew against second-ranked Florida State and carried that momentum into Sunday’s contest.
Although Syracuse is 12th in the ACC, junior defender Jessica Vigna said people shouldn’t be counting her team out.
“I know some people could think we are out of it right now, we only have one win in the ACC,” said Vigna. “But we still have three games left. We got three points here and if we win out the next three games, we could have  points in the ACC and come right in time for the tournament.”
Syracuse now has five points in the ACC with a 1-4-2 record in the conference. But SU has shown it can play with the top teams in the nation. It also tied Notre Dame earlier in the season.
With three games left in the season, the Orange is chasing a spot in the ACC tournament. SU needs to place in the top-eight for a chance to play. ‘Cuse is four points beyond Louisville, who holds the final spot with nine points.
The Orange’s lone goal came off the foot of freshman Taylor Bennett. In the 26th minute, Pittsburgh (2-12-1) was called for a handball outside of the box. Bennett lined up to take the free kick from 25-yards out and struck a powerful line drive straight towards the upper left hand corner. Panthers keeper Taylor Francis dove and got a hand on the ball, but it didn’t help as the ball whizzed past her.
The goal marked Bennett’s second of the season. Both of her goals have come off of free kicks.
Bennett left the game in the 72nd minute after sustaining an injury. She did not return and was unable to speak after the game because she was going to be evaluated by team doctors. However, she was on the sideline for the remainder of the contest and did sign autographs after.
With four days of rest ahead, Bennett should be ready for the next game.
The shutout is the seventh of the season for Syracuse. It also marks the sixth complete-game shutout for SU goalie Courtney Brosnan, which is the third highest total in Syracuse history. She finished the game with five saves.
Brosnan briefly went down with an injury early in the first half, holding her right shoulder after making a save. It has been a lingering issue for the past few games, but she has played through the pain. Her goals against average has actually lowered in that time span (1.09).
Syracuse head coach Phil Wheddon said the win is a turning point for the team, and hopes it can keep up its strong play as Syracuse heads to North Carolina on Thursday to play Wake Forest.