Women’s soccer takes first home loss in double overtime thriller

George Barker, deputy sports editor

For the second game in a row, the Huskies played some extra minutes, but this time they couldn’t secure a golden goal win as they fell to Yale 2-1. 

The game got off to an exciting start, with two corner kicks in the first two minutes. However, neither the Huskies (3-5) or the Bulldogs (5-2) could cash in.

The first major scoring chance of the game went to the Bulldogs, who put a shot on net from near the edge of the box, but the ball bounced harmlessly off the crossbar, granting Northeastern redshirt sophomore Megan Adams a goal kick. The Husky keeper had allowed less than a goal per game coming into Tuesday evening’s home tilt. 

Freshman midfielder Halle McCabe gave the Huskies a chance to take the lead, as the 17-year-old tore down the sideline and made a nice move to open herself up for a shot on net. Unfortunately for NU, McCabe seemed to barely mishit the ball, and the shot barely challenged Yale senior goaltender Alyssa Fagel. 

Northeastern had the momentum early in the game, keeping the ball in the attacking zone for long stretches of time. About 15 minutes in, senior midfielder Kerri Zerfoss won the battle for a tough 50/50 ball, launching a quick header towards net. Fagel, who has played every minute between the posts for the Bulldogs this year, turned Zerfoss away. 

Despite the Huskies controlling the ball for much of the first half, it was the visiting Ivy League team that struck first. 

Freshman midfielder Chloe Laureano started a nice set piece play for the Bulldogs off a corner, making a short pass to freshman forward Ellery Winkler. Winkler hesitated, then passed it back to Laureano to draw the defense, and Adams, up away from the goal a little. 

Laureano then placed a beautiful cross right near Adams, who couldn’t stop junior midfielder Sarah Jordan, who just subbed in a minute before, from connecting on a header and scoring the evening’s first goal. 

The second half began with momentum squarely in the Bulldogs’ favor. Around 15 minutes into the second period, the visitors dropped a corner kick right through Adams’ hands, setting up a wonderful scoring chance for Yale. Senior Aerial Chavarin had a chance to give the Bulldogs a  2-0 lead, but Adams dove through multiple swinging feet to fall on the ball and keep the score 1-0. 

While Yale dominated possession in the second half, it was the Huskies who managed to score, continuing an unexpected pattern of the team possessing the ball less scoring more. 

In the 67th minute, NU tied the game up. Chelsea Domond launched a near-perfect shot into the top left corner from 25 yards out, giving Fagel no shot at keeping the Huskies off the board. The junior forward had been flying all over the field throughout the game, frequently drawing double teams and generating scoring chances off of well-placed passes and physical fights for the ball. 

The game would go to overtime, but not before the Bulldogs made more runs at the net. They had a few chances to take the lead, with a dangerous free kick just outside the box with 14 minutes left and a tough left-footed shot that forced Adams to make a diving stop with nine minutes left. 

The Huskies had an additional scoring chance of their own as junior defender Julianne Ross streaked up the sideline and struck a beautiful cross to Zerfoss with six minutes left. Zerfoss mishandled the ball right in front of Fagel, who was able to deflect it harmlessly out of play. 

The Huskies entered their second overtime battle in a row. Unfortunately, this time they wouldn’t come out on top. The Bulldogs looked to be the stronger team throughout the extra time, and had three marquee scoring chances. 

Yale’s fantastic freshman Winkler, who leads the team in scoring, tried to end the game with a perfect cross into the box, but the header launched the ball over the net. Had the shot been on net, Adams likely would have had no chance to save it, as the ball was passed behind her.

Later, Winkler looked to end the game again, catching Adams off guard on a shot just inches from the goal. A corner kick had led to a ton of traffic in front of the net, and Adams wound up out of position to stop Winkler. However, she made a remarkable recovery to keep the Huskies alive. 

Finally, in the second overtime, Winkler contributed to a hard-fought win for the visitors from New Haven. She played an absolutely spectacular through ball past Husky defenders to Lydia Shaw. The ball was positioned in the best spot for Shaw to launch a contested shot past Adams to end the game and give the junior forward her first goal of the season.  

The Huskies took their first home loss of the year and fell to 3-5. The Bulldogs move to 5-2 on the season. NU will travel to Providence on Sunday, likely with some tired legs after back-to-back double OT games, to face off against the Friars, who are 3-3-1 heading into their game Thursday night.