Oct. 22, 2011
CINCINNATI – In its final match of the 2011 season, the University of Cincinnati women’s soccer team fell to University of Louisville 1-0 Saturday evening at Gettler Stadium.
The only goal of the match occurred in the 59th minute when senior defender Kaitie McDonald sent a cross-field serve to sophomore forward Christine Exeter, who took the pass on a breakaway and shot the ball from 15 yards out past UC freshman forward Kristina Utley (Castro Valley, Calif./Castro Valley).
It was the only goal needed for Louisville (10-5-3, 8-1-2 BIG EAST), which clinched the BIG EAST National Division championship with the win.
Cincinnati (6-9-4, 2-7-2 BIG EAST) was relentless in its effort to tie the score down the stretch, attempting six shots in the second half. Overall, UC out-shot Louisville 12-11.
The Bearcats’ best opportunity to tie the match occurred in the 65th minute when senior midfielder Logan Ballinger (Cincinnati, Ohio/Seton) took a shot from the left side of the box, but the ball was deflected by diving UofL senior goalkeeper, Chloe Kiefer.
UC’s final chance to force the match into overtime occurred in the closing seconds when senior defender Kelli Pawelko (Lemont, Ill./Lemont) shot a free kick from 40 yards out that nearly dropped into the net before Kiefer jumped to grab the ball in midair.
Cincinnati did its best to limit offensive chances for Exeter, the reigning BIG EAST Rookie of the Year, by shadowing her with a defender for most of the match. Sophomore back Kate Schmidt (Sylvania, Ohio/Northview) primarily held that defensive responsibility.
Exeter ended the night attempting just three shots.
Through the first half, the Bearcats and Cardinals were deadlocked in a 0-0 score. Each team attempted six shots, with both keepers recording three saves.
The first 45 minutes featured a physicality expected from a match between a UofL and Cincinnati as both teams combined for 12 fouls, the same number of shots attempted. That trend continued in the second half as Louisville racked up 12 fouls and one yellow card, while UC recorded 11 fouls and two yellow cards.
The Bearcats now lead the all-time series against Louisville fell to 17-10-1.
Prior to the match, Cincinnati’s seven seniors – Ballinger, Pawelko, Erin Kaufman, Erin Petree, Lauren Romanelli, Kay Young and Emily Hebbeler – were honored during pregame ceremonies as part of Senior Day festivities.