Owls draw even to Quakers in defensive stalemate

Temple University’s women soccer team tied the University of Pennsylvania 0-0, on Friday night at Rhodes Field in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Emily Kavanaugh, a senior forward, dribbles the ball during an Owls’ game against Drexel University on Sept. 19, 2021. | NOEL CHACKO / THE TEMPLE NEWS

Temple University women’s soccer (0-1-2, 0-0 American Athletic Conference) tied 0-0 against the University of Pennsylvania (0-0-1, 0-0 Ivy League in the season opener for the Quakers. 

From the start, the Quakers came out of the gate physically aggressive, generating a corner kick within a minute of the start of the match. The Quakers pounced earlier and kept the ball within the Owls’ side of the field for the majority of the first half by creating nine shots with Quakers’ sophomore forward Janae Stewart generating four shots, two of them on goal. 

“We expected them to come out flying,” said Owls’ head coach Nick Bochette. “Credit to them, they put us on our heels early and often” 

While getting shots on goal, the Quakers also paid special attention to Owls’ senior forward Emily Kavanaugh who faced consistent pressure regardless of where the ball was on the field, causing the Owls to look elsewhere for offensive production 

Despite the lack of offense, the Owls managed to stay in the game behind an impressive performance from sophomore goalkeeper Kyla Burns, who recorded five saves in her second full game of the season, replacing graduate student goalkeeper Kamryn Stablein in the net. 

“[Burns] was excellent,” Bochette said. “I thought today was her showing the world what we already see in training.” 

Burns made three crucial saves throughout the first half to keep the game tied heading into the break. 

“At halftime we had a very frank conversation,” Bochette said. “We agreed it wasn’t fun defending for that amount of time and that we knew we were capable of being better.” 

Coming out of the half, Temple showed a more aggressive approach, instantly generating a shot in the 46th minute by Kavanaugh. 

Owls’ intensity from the first half  remained present and creative offense was also sparked by freshman midfielder Lauren SanFelice, who constantly attacked the wing creating chances. 

The Quakers continued to attack the Owls down the wings unsuccessfully, which initiated more offense, leading to shots by SanFelice in the 54th and 57th minute, and one from Kavanaugh in the 71st.  

Temple’s last scoring attempt came towards the end of the match with a shot by senior forward Gabriela Johnson, which slid out right, yielded unsuccessful and sealed Temple second time of the season. 

The game ended after 90 minutes of scoreless play because of the new collegiate rule eliminating the overtime period for regular season games. 

“It’s different,” Bochette claimed. “We are thinking that we have an extra 20 minutes and have to start getting subs ready.” 

The Owls will play their next match against Rutgers University (3-0-0, 0-0 Big Ten Conference) On September 1 at 7 p.m. in Piscataway, New Jersey. 

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