Cardinals come back from early deficit to down Aggies

Cardinals come back from early deficit to down Aggies

GWYNEDD VALLEY, Pa. – The CUA women’s soccer team made it two straight wins on Saturday as the Cardinals earned a 3-2 come-from-behind victory over Delaware Valley at the Griffin Classic.  After trailing 2-0 early in the match CUA unleashed three unanswered scores, capped by Regina Zolbrod’s game-winner with just over three minutes to play.

Each team took 13 shots on the afternoon, while CUA was awarded two corner kicks to Delaware Valley’s one.  Amanda Cowan stopped four shots in goal for the Cardinals, and Aggies’ goalkeeper Julie Burnell sent back six shots.

Delaware Valley set the tone early as the Aggies scored a pair of goals just over a minute apart 18 minutes into the contest.  Dana Gentile netted the first score and Johanna Lovallo made it a 2-0 Aggies lead 1:07 later.

“We played an uninspired first 20 minutes,” CUA head coach JP Sousa said afterwards.  “We gave up those two goals, but fortunately the girls were able to regroup.”

At the 22:11 mark CUA got on the board and sliced the Aggies lead in half when Kelly Donnelly found the back of the net off a feed from Erin Saia.  “We received a very nice goal from Kelly that started to shift the momentum back towards our side,” Sousa said.

That proved to be the final score of the opening 45 minutes, sending the teams into halftime with the Aggies ahead 2-1.  “We made some adjustments at halftime,” Sousa explained.  “We talked about playing the ball more in the attacking third.  I thought the girls stuck to our plan and we were able to generate more opportunities in the second half.”

Following a scoreless 30 minutes to open the second, CUA tied things at two on a score by Carolyn Girandola at the 76:04 mark.  The goal was Girandola’s first of her collegiate career. 

Ten minutes later Zolbrod took a feed from Katie Donatelli and beat Burnell for the game-winner.  “Katie made a great pass on that play,” Sousa said.  “It was great to see the girls fight all the way back after being down early.”

He continued, “To play two games in less than 24 hours and come away with two wins is great.  That was the purpose of this trip; to get two wins up here.  I thought we stayed composed and it was evident that after a shaky start, our girls didn’t want to lose today.”

Sousa went onto say, “I was pleased to see our three goals were scored by three different girls.  I think we’re still working to put together a full 90 minutes, but we proved today that when we focus and play our game, we’re very capable.”

Following the game Erin Saia, Caitlin Brett, Katie Donatelli and Mary McGann were named to the Griffin Classic All-Tournament Team.  

CUA will return to action on September 16 when the Cardinal travel to take on Gettysburg.  Action is set to get underway beginning at 7:00.