Miami soccer finished its season with a 1-0 loss against Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) opponent No. 8 Virginia on Thursday night at Cobb stadium.
“I thought the team performed really well,” Miami head coach Sarah Barnes said in a Miami Athletics release. We turned them over and created a lot of goal-scoring opportunities. We defended quite well and it took an exceptional shot to beat the team. The result is really disappointing, but the performance as a whole was outstanding.”
Prior to the start of action, the Hurricanes (5-8-3, 2-7-1 ACC) honored their seniors. María Jakobsdóttir, Jackie Koerwitz, Chloe O’Neill, Taylor Shell and Emma Tucker received standing ovations and honors on the field in their last game donning a Miami jersey.
“Without question, they’ve brought significant value in terms of performances on the field, but more than anything from a culture standpoint,” Barnes said. “This has been a really difficult environment to come in and make the changes that can turn the program in the right direction, and their commitment, perseverance and positive mindset have helped us move closer to where we want to be. We’re going to miss them.”
Although the girls wanted to get a win on Senior Night, Miami fell short. The Hurricanes continued their offensive struggles, which has been their main issue throughout the entire season.
Virginia outshot Miami 15-4 with six shots on goal compared to the Hurricanes’ two. The two shots on goal for the Hurricanes came from O’Neill and Emma Pidding.
Virginia fifth-year senior forward Alexa Spaanstra scored the only goal of the match late in the 11th minute. She buried a goal off her right foot in the bottom right corner.
Miami’s defense did exactly what they had to do for most of the match, and it started with their anchor in net, Melissa Dagenais. Besides the goal in the 11th minute of the game, Dagenias had a solid outing, recording five saves in 90 minutes. She finishes her season with a whooping 22 goals allowed in 16 contests.
Despite losing its last match, Miami had a much-improved season. It registered five home wins and five clean sheets, the most by the ‘Canes in six years.
There will be some questions heading into next year with the Miami soccer program. Since taking over the Hurricanes in 2018, Barnes has yet to make an ACC tournament appearance.
However, the Hurricanes are poised to improve even further in 2023, as they bring back an abundance of players. Dagenais will return, as well as freshman forwards Megan Morgan and Tusca Mahmoudpour. Defenders Emma Tucker and Adrianna Serna will also be back next season.
With an exciting young core and leadership all around, the ‘Canes community should be looking forward to the product Barnes will be putting on the field in 2023.