WALTHAM, Mass. - At the first game of the 2013 season, the MIT women's soccer team fell to Brandeis University on the road on Friday evening with a score of 1-0. The Engineers, who were recently ranked #15 in the nation in the NSCAA Division III preseason rankings, have faced the Judges in their season-opening game for 10 of the past 11 years.
Within the first ten minutes of the start of the game, Brandeis took three shots at MIT's goal, two of which were saved by freshman goalkeeper Lauren Ullmann (Princeton, N.J.). Just under the 21 minute mark, the Judges' Dara Spital shot from 25 yards out, sneaking the ball past Ullmann and burying it into the back of the net.
The Engineers were outshot 8-4 during the first period. Of the four shots that MIT took, three of them had to be saved by goalie Michelle Savuto. Sophomore Priyanka Gaur (Austin, Texas) led the way with two shots on goal, both of which were blocked by Savuto.
Tech raised the intensity immediately upon returning to the field for the second half, taking five consecutive shots on the opposing goal within three minutes of play. Senior Michaelann Rodriguez (Florence, Ala.) fired two back-to-back shots at the net, being thwarted both times by the keeper. Senior Rachel Dias Carlson (Albany, N.Y.), junior Ambika Krishnamachar (Darien, Conn.) and sophomore Morgan Moroi (New Albany, Ohio) all took a turn at the net, each time being turned away by Savuto.
MIT allowed only two shots on net during the entire second half, of which only one had to be saved by Ullmann. On the other side of the field, the Engineers took 11 shots, forcing Savuto out of the net five times. Although MIT threatened the Judges with a handful of close calls, the second period ended with a Brandeis victory.
Gaur, Dias Carlson and Krishnamachar each took three shots at the goal throughout the game. Rodriguez shot twice, while Moroi, OBrian, junior Michelle Battipaglia (Katonah, N.Y.) and freshman Victoria Gregory (Syracuse, N.Y.) shot once each. In her collegiate debut, Ullmann spent all 90 minutes in the net, making a total of six saves.
MIT returns to action on Sunday, Sept. 1 when it travels down the road to face Simmons College at 12:00 p.m.