George Mason snaps Penn women soccer's shutout streak
Penn coach Ambrose says team lacked life in 3-2 defeat
September 18, 2011, 11:45 pm·
George Mason wasted no time in putting an end to Penn’s five-game shutout streak on Sunday.
The Patriots’ Alyssa Andersen scored on Quakers’ junior goalkeeper Sarah Banks in the first minute on a shot that coach Darren Ambrose thought Andersen intended as a cross.
Just eight minutes later, the Patriots (3-3-2) struck again from a similar angle to take a 2-0 lead before the 10-minute mark of Penn’s eventual 3-2 loss, the team’s first of the season.
“There was no edge to us. We were just not alive,” Ambrose said.
“I think that we’ve played well, and we’re a good team, but today I felt that we were living on our reputation,” he added.
The Red and Blue (5-1-0) were coming off a 1-0 win Friday night over James Madison in which junior midfielder Erin Beck said the players “poured [their] hearts out.”
“We were still celebrating the Friday night win [on Sunday],” Ambrose said. “I don’t think we were ready.”
Though the Quakers went into the half trailing, 2-0, Ambrose still believed the team would prevail. Facing their first real adversity all season, Beck said, “We were excited to see how we would respond.”
But the Patriots came out of the break just as strong, scoring on senior goalkeeper Caroline Williams in the 47th minute.
Senior Marin McDermott led a valiant comeback effort that fell just short for the Red and Blue.
McDermott converted a penalty kick in the 79th minute and scored again four minutes later on a feed from sophomore Brianna Rano for her fourth goal of the season, but Penn could get nothing more in the final minutes.
“We played with a bit of fire,” Ambrose said of the Quakers’ second-half performance. “We didn’t want to be embarrassed.”
“[We] lacked emotion, lacked pride until the end of the game,” he added.
Ambrose said the team had trouble responding to George Mason’s physical play.
“We have to learn to toughen up,” he said.
He was disappointed in the defensive performance, as well. Ambrose said the team exhibited “poor defending, which is ironic given [our defense] is all anyone wants to talk about.”.
Ambrose explained that the Quakers were slow getting to balls, tackling without any meaning and giving up too much space.
Penn’s winning and shutout streaks ended just as the team enters Ivy play. The Quakers travel to play Harvard on Friday.
“It’s definitely a pivotal moment for our team,” Beck said.