A Lone Goal Rematch


Credit: Rob Rasmussen | Quinnipiac Athletics

Jacqueline Ydrovo, Beat Reporter: Quinnipiac Women's Soccer

On Wednesday, Sept. 28, the Quinnipiac women’s soccer team traveled to Buffalo, NY, to face off against Canisius in what would be their second MAAC game of the season, after defeating Niagara 4-0 at home. During that game, Rebecca Cooke, the junior forward/midfielder from Dublin, Ireland would score the lone goal for the Bobcats. Cooke’s goal would come during the first half of the game with an assist from Paige LaBerge, a senior forward from Manchester, NH. The goal would eventually win the game for the Bobcats. Quinnipiac would leave that game 2-0 in the MAAC preparing to face Siena in their third conference game. In their second MAAC game, the Bobcats only put up four shots on goal, nine shots, and 16 fouls.

Now only 36 days later the Bobcats would be 9-1 in the MAAC and named the MAAC Regular Co-Season Champions alongside the Fairfield Stags, and would face Canisius once again in the semi-finals of the MAAC Tournament. In order to get here Quinnipiac would defeat Niagara, Canisius, Siena, Fairfield, Marist, Rider, Manhattan, Saint Peter’s, and Mount St. Mary’s. The only opponent to defeat the Bobcats would be the Iona Gaels back on Oct. 15. Besides dominating their schedule and being ranked number one in the MAAC, the Bobcats overall had 14 wins, two losses, and one tie. At home, the Bobcats went 9-0 while having five wins, two losses, and one tie while on the road.

After being named the MAAC Regular Co-Season Champions, Quinnipiac had a bye week to get them to the semi-finals where they once again faced Canisius on Thursday, Nov. 3 in Hamden. Before the game on Nov. 3, the MAAC announced their women’s soccer major awards and their All-MAAC teams on Monday, Oct. 31. Seven Bobcats were named to the 2022 MAAC First Team including Cooke, Courtney Chochol, Markela Bejleri, Olivia Scott, Emely van der Vliet, Kayla Mingachos and Emily DeNunzio. Lauren Triglione and Sofia Lospinoso were named to the 2022 MAAC Second Team while LaBerge was named to the MAAC Third Team. 21 players were also named to the MAAC All-Academic Team as well.

Along with the MAAC First Team award, Cooke was awarded the first-ever Women’s Golden Boot award for her nineteen goals, where she led the nation in goals, had forty-five points, five game-winning goals, forty-one shots on goal and seventy-one shots at the time of MAAC publication. Cooke would increase her statistics after the Canisius game where she added five shots, two shots on goal and one goal.

During the MAAC Tournament semi-final game, the Bobcats and Golden Griffins would meet once again. As stated before, these two teams saw each other 36 days ago, when Quinnipiac won 1-0. Coming into the game the Bobcats were coming off a bye week while Canisius had to face Rider, and won 4-2 in penalty kicks.

Right from the start, the two teams came in hot with both teams playing at an aggressive and fast pace which would lead to a scoreless first half. In the first half, Quinnipiac would put up seven shots against the Canisius goal, while Canisius racked up three yellow cards. The teams would head into the locker rooms at the half scoreless.

For head coach Dave Clarke, entering halftime scoreless is not anything new for him as he said, “So our last thing yesterday was actually, we said if its nil-nil at half time we’ve been here a few times this year. You don’t panic, you don’t have to rush, you still have forty-five minutes, and as it panned out it was nil-nil at halftime in the exact same type of game as Mount St. Mary’s and then we did the same thing and we found a way to win one-nil, more so like the St. Peter’s game.”

The second half would see more of the same action where the Canisius defense continued to hold off the Bobcats attempts. Canisius would make three saves for the ten shots they faced from Quinnipiac, while the Bobcats had to only face one shot. In an intense and aggressive game, Canisius received four more yellow cards in the second half, and two red cards, while Quinnipiac only received one yellow card the entire game. Quinnipiac would total seventeen shots while Canisius only had one. Once again Cooke would put the ball into the net during the 80th minute on a penalty kick to give the Bobcats the 1-0 lead. In the end, Cooke’s goal was all the team needed as the Bobcats would win the game 1-0 over Canisius.

Quinnipiac will now move on to the MAAC Tournament Championship where they will either face Fairfield or Niagara at home on Sunday, Nov. 6.