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Hoyas hope to make noise in Big East Tournament
The Big East Quarterfinals in women’s soccer will be déjà-vu for the Blue and Gray (14-2-2, 8-1-1 Big East), as the team will face either DePaul (8-9-2, 3-6-1 Big East) or Villanova (7-8-3, 5-4-1 Big East), its final two opponents of the regular season. The good news for the Georgetown women’s soccer team is that it enters Sunday’s Big East Tournament Quarterfinal as the number one seed in the division. The bad news is that the Hoyas could potentially play the team that handed them their first Big East loss of the year, Villanova. This time, though, Georgetown will be playing on home turf at North Kehoe Field.
The Blue and Gray will be looking to avenge its first Big East loss of the year.
“Well, you would think [there is a revenge factor] since we lost the first time. You would be hoping for that,” said head coach Kevin Nolan. “On the other side, they have beaten us once now so they have the confidence of playing us again. I have always said that it is very difficult to beat a team twice.”
Georgetown defeated the Blue Demons in extra time, 1-0, on North Kehoe on Oct. 14. In the regular season finale at Villanova last Friday, the Hoyas fell to the Wildcats 1-0.
The loss ended Georgetown’s nine-game unbeaten streak. The goal surrendered to Villanova was only the Hoyas’ second goal allowed in the past 10 games. Georgetown’s stout defense is helmed by junior Alexa St. Martin, senior Claire Magnolia, junior Mary Kroening, and freshman Neela Mohan. The Hoyas lead the Big East in goals allowed per game with 0.61 goals per game.
Statistically speaking, Georgetown’s offense ranks as one of the best in the Big East. The Hoyas are second in the Big East in goals with 44 and goals per game average with 1.94. Sophomore midfielder Daphne Corboz tops the Big East and Georgetown in points and goals as she has racked up 16 goals and six assists.
Nolan attributes part of Corboz’s success this year to her move from outside midfield to center midfield.
“Daphne moved into the middle this year from out wide last year, her favorite spot,” Nolan said. “She had a chance to step up and show everybody what a good player she was.”
Junior forward Kaitlin Brenn ranks third in the Big East in points with nine goals and eight assists.
“Between those two and what we get from wide players like Colleen Dinn and Sarah Adams, we try to balance that together and attack,” Nolan said.
So far this season, neither DePaul nor Villanova has as dynamic an offense as the Hoyas. The squads are tied for 12th in the Big East in goals. Senior Heidi Sabatura leads the Wildcats with 11 points. Sabatura is primarily an assist woman (two goals and seven assists on the year) as her impressive feed led to the game winner against Georgetown. DePaul has a much more balanced attack. Ashleigh Goddard has eight points, while four other players total seven points.
Georgetown had difficulty finding the back of the net against these two teams that have posted mediocre defensive numbers this year. The Blue Demons are sixth in goals allowed while the Wildcats are ninth.
“I expect our game between the DePaul-Villanova winner to be a tight game regardless,” Nolan said. “I wouldn’t think it would be anything but a tight game because at this stage of the season if you lose, you’re done.”
If the Hoyas are able to advance past the quarterfinals, they will play either Louisville or South Florida. On the road Georgetown tied Louisville, 1-1, on Oct. 12.
The Hoyas will begin their quest for a Big East Tournament championship at 1 p.m. at North Kehoe this Sunday Oct. 28.
“I feel like this year is probably the first year in a long time that [the tournament] is wide open,” Nolan said. “We have as good a chance as anyone else.”