After falling from No. 10 to No. 15 in United Soccer Coaches’ weekly rankings, the Georgetown women’s soccer team seeks its second straight victory in a home contest against Saint Francis University.
The Hoyas (4-2-0, 0-0-0 Big East) went west over the weekend for two games, one against Stanford and one against San Jose State. On Friday, Georgetown fell 4-0 to the Stanford University Cardinal (4-1-0, Pac-12), now ranked No. 2 in the nation.
“I think going into the Stanford game we knew it was going to be a challenge. We wanted to compare ourselves against the best teams,” sophomore midfielder Carson Nizialek said. “I don’t think it was the same game as the score showed. I think it was a pretty even game until they got that second goal; we lost a little bit of energy after that.”
The loss kept Georgetown 0-2 against ranked teams, with a previous loss to West Virginia University in the Hoyas’ season opener Aug. 18.
The Blue and Gray bounced back Sunday with a win against the San Jose State University Spartans (1-4-0, Mountain West).
“I think everybody is pretty upbeat; I don’t think anyone is dwelling on the loss that we had,” Nizialek said. “We got to bounce back, get a win, get a couple goals and get some conGeorgetown scored a quick goal less than seven minutes into the game and another at the 31-minute mark to secure the 3-0 victory. Sophomore defender Meghan Nally and Nizialek scored the first half goals, and junior forward Caitlin Farrell sealed the deal with a 75th minute goal, her third of the year.
Blistering heat was a factor in both contests, with the Hoyas being forced to play in 90-degree weather and high humidity on short rest against the Spartans.
“[San Jose State was] well-rested going into the game. So I knew it was going to be a challenge for us, because we had to spend a lot of energy in the game on Friday against Stanford,” Head Coach Dave Nolan said. “I knew it was a situation where we were going to have to win and just grit it out a little bit. … I think we learned a lot from our group about how mentally strong we are.”
Friday’s game against Saint Francis (2-3-0, Northeast) is a rematch of the two squads’ first-round NCAA tournament game, one that the Hoyas won 2-0. Players who have graduated from Georgetown’s roster scored both goals. Nolan emphasized the need for his team to find new sources of scoring this season.
“We scored 63-64 goals last year, and we graduated 25 of them,” Nolan said. “We need [Farrell] to try and get above ten, the same way we need [sophomore forward] Amanda [Carolan]to try and get above ten and we need [senior midfielder] Rachel [Corboz] to try and get above ten.”
The Hoyas have fared well against unranked opponents so far this season, going 4-0 to date, for which Nolan commended the team.
“I think our opponents have played up, and we’ve taken care of business, as you would expect a good team to do,” Nolan said. “It’s a sign of a good team to take care of business. It looks easier than it is, but it is not that easy to take care of those games without slipping up once or twice.”
Nizialek and the rest of the Hoyas are looking forward to Friday’s matchup against the Red Flash.
“We need to get back to practice this week, focus on what we do well and train hard,” Nizialek said. “It’s just soccer, so it’s just us focusing on ourselves and trying to get better every game.”
Kickoff at Shaw Field is at 4 p.m. on Friday.