QU Women's Soccer Blanks Canisius, 3-0, To Advance To MAAC Semifinals
HAMDEN, Connecticut – In its first conference postseason game at home in program history, No. 4 seeded Quinnipiac women's soccer team defeated No. 5 seeded Canisius, 3-0, in a Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference Tournament Quarterfinal match-up at the QU Soccer Field in Hamden, Conn. With the win, Quinnipiac advances to the MAAC Tournament Semifinals on Friday, Nov. 4 with the opponent to be determined following the match-up between No. 6 Marist at No. 3 Rider. Should Rider defeat Marist, Quinnipiac would face Monmouth, but a Marist win would pit Quinnipiac against Siena.
Kelly Caruso (Rocky Hill, Connecticut) had a goal and an assist to lead Quinnipiac while Al Pelletier (Cheshire, Connecticut) and Nadya Gill (Toronto, Ontario) also scored for the Bobcats. Caruso and Jess Gargan (Dublin, Ireland) assisted on Pelletier's goal while Jess Fontaine (Enfield, Connecticut) and Sarah Pandolfi (North Haven, Connecticut) picked up the helpers on Gill's goal. In goal for Quinnipiac, Olivia Myszewski (Elm Grove, Wisconsin) stopped three Canisius shots in 83 minutes before giving way to Devan Malcom (Natick, Massachusetts) who made two amazing saves in the final seven minutes of play to preserve the clean sheet.
Caruso's delivered her fourth goal of the season 25 minutes into the game when a foul above the Canisius box gave Quinnipiac a free kick from 20 yards out. After surveying the movement between her and the goal, Caruso blasted a shot to the top-left corner past the out-stretched hands of Canisius keeper Alana Rossi.
Coming out of the half, Gargan sent a beautiful pass to Caruso at the top of the box who drew a second defender before handing the ball to Pelletier. The sophomore forward then dribbled the ball in before stopping and firing a shot to the opposite post. The ball would bend its way in around Rossi to give Quinnipiac a two-goal lead with plenty of time on the clock.
Ten minutes later, it was time for the Bobcats' leading scorer to get involved as Gill struck her ninth goal of the season. Fontaine took control of a pass from Pandolfi at midfield and turned to look towards the goal. Glancing to her left, she slid the ball to her right to Gill who was streaking down the right flank. Gill ran past a Canisius back before Canisius goalkeeper Meaghan O'Neill came out to challenge. With O'Neill stepping out, Gill spied daylight to the left and directed the shot to the far side of the goal to give Quinnipiac a 3-0 lead.
After Myszewski left the game with just under seven minutes to play, Canisius immediately threatened as Kathleen Lawver blasted a shot on goal from the top of the box. The ball spotted space just under the bar but Malcolm was able to punch it over the goal to conserve the shutout. With the ball back in play and ricocheting through the box, Canisius' Maddie Good attempted to tuck it in the near-side post but Malcolm made a diving stab to smother the ball.
The win marked the first postseason victory for Quinnipiac since defeating Monmouth, 4-0, in the 2000 Northeast Conference Championship game. Prior to today's playoff win, the Bobcats had gone 0-4-1 in their last five postseason games. The Bobcats are now 4-6-1 all-time in postseason games and will take on either the Hawks or Saints, both teams Quinnipiac fell to in the regular season on the road. Monmouth took down Quinnipiac, 2-1, in an overtime thriller while Siena dominated the Bobcats, 2-0, in Loudonville last week.