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Stony Brook women’s soccer stays alive in scoreless draw

Forward Gabrielle Côté (foreground) defends against Drexel on Thursday, Oct. 12. Côté led the Stony Brook women’s soccer team with four shots and three shots on goal at Northeastern on Thursday. BRITTNEY DIETZ/THE STATESMAN

The Stony Brook women’s soccer team’s hopes to qualify for playoffs are still alive, but hanging on by a thread after failing to earn three points.

The Seawolves (6-5-6, 4-4-4 CAA) traveled to Boston on Thursday for their regular-season finale against the Northeastern Huskies (8-3-5, 6-1-4 CAA). Though both teams came in with top-three scoring offenses in the Coastal Athletic Association (CAA), the game ended in a scoreless draw. Meanwhile, in Philadelphia, the University of North Carolina Wilmington (UNCW) lost 2-0 at Drexel, keeping Stony Brook in place for the final playoff spot.

The Seawolves started the match off hot by winning four corner kicks and recording three shots (two on goal) through the first seven minutes. However, none of those scoring opportunities were too much for Northeastern goalkeeper Holland Stam to handle.

In the final minute of the first half, Northeastern forward Vivian Akyirem had the ball at the top of Stony Brook’s box with three defenders around her. With one move, Akyirem broke free and had a one-on-one opportunity with goalkeeper Nicolette Pasquarella. Akyirem wasted no time and ripped a shot hard and low, but Pasquarella stuffed the opportunity and iced out the rest of the half.

In the 54th minute Akyirem had another high-danger opportunity. Akyirem blew past a pair of defenders to set up another one-on-one, but this time her shot was too high and it hit the crossbar to keep the match scoreless. The Huskies got the rebound, but they were offside.

Forward Gabrielle Côté created a chance for Stony Brook in the 57th minute by stealing the ball on the Huskies’ side of midfield. Côté dribbled towards the goal and unleashed a shot from just behind the penalty box, but Stam broke into a full-extension dive to her right to redirect it.

In the 78th minute, Côté weaved through four defenders to create shooting space in the box. She ripped her shot low and towards the far-left post, but Stam dove to her right and caught the ball to kill Côté’s chance.

The Seawolves had no shortage of opportunities, taking 16 shots while landing eight on target and also winning eight corner kicks. Côté led the team with four shots and landed three on goal. Midfielder Linn Beck and forward Luciana Setteducate each took three shots and landed one on target. Midfielder Kristina Garcia alongside forwards Ashley Bell and Graceann Murphy each landed one shot on goal.

Stony Brook’s defense surrendered 17 shots, but only five landed on target. Though Akyirem had a big day with seven shots and two on goal, the Seawolves kept her off the board.

Pasquarella secured her fourth clean sheet of the year, stopping all five shots that came her way. Opposite her, Stam posted her fifth clean sheet with eight saves.

With Stony Brook reaching 16 points, Delaware was officially eliminated from playoff contention despite its win over Hampton. With the Seawolves failing to win, Campbell still had a chance to sneak into the playoffs, but it tied 1-1 with Elon, leading to its elimination. Stony Brook’s fate now relies on UNCW’s match with the Blue Hens on Sunday at noon. If the Seahawks do not win (loss or draw), then the Seawolves will clinch the sixth seed.

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