Two Late Goals Muddy DePaul's Fast Start
PITTSBURGH - What started out in a blaze of optimism for DePaul eventually got bogged down in muddy Founders Field on Friday night.
The Blue Demons could not hang onto an early lead and fell 2-1 to Pittsburgh in a BIG EAST Conference matchup played in a steady downpour.
The loss snapped DePaul's three-game winning streak and dropped its record to 7-4-2, 2-2-0 in the BIG EAST.
Michelle Scandora certainly got this weekend, BIG EAST road trip off on the right foot when she scored after a well-served corner kick by Tara Strickland 28 minutes, 57 seconds into the match.
It was Scandora's second goal of the season and Strickland's third assist. Along with four goals, Strickland has a team-high 11 points.
But Pittsburgh (6-2-3, 1-0-3 in the BIG EAST) battled back to tie it in regulation time and then hit the game-winner in overtime.
At the 68:58 mark, Liz Carroll scored on a penalty kick five yards outside the box. Her kick went through the Blue Demon wall and into the left side of the net.
"Our wall did not do its job," said DePaul coach Erin Chastain said. "Our wall moved, and (goalkeeper) Claire Hanold didn't have a chance."
As a fog began mixing in with the heavy downpour during overtime, Pitt's leading scorer---freshman Ashley Cuba---scored her seventh goal of the season off a crossing pass from Rebecca Fraser at the 98:36 mark.
"Give Pittsburgh credit---they outfought us and did a good job of taking control of the game," said DePaul coach Erin Chastain. "There were times in the second half that I felt we sat back and did too much ball-watching.
"We all have high expectations of ourselves. We under-performed against Pittsburgh, and everybody on the team is disappointed."
Pitt was on the attack all night, forcing Hanold to make a season-high 10 saves.
"I felt like we didn't have much fight or aggressiveness tonight," Chastain said. "When the chances were there, we didn't take control of the game. We did not get a consistent 90-plus minutes performance from our team.
"We'll look at film and go over everything on Saturday. It's going to be a tough one on Sunday because West Virginia is a really good team."
NOTES: The Pitt stop marked the beginning of a four-game BIG EAST road swing for the Blue Demons... on Sunday, they will face West Virginia and next weekend, Chastain's club will be at Seton Hall on Friday and at No. 13 Rutgers on Sunday... the loss on Friday dropped DePaul's road record to 3-4-1... at Wish Field, the Blue Demons are 4-0-1... Pitt outshot DePaul 19-11 and had 12 shots on goal to seven for the Blue Demons... Strickland and Shannon Williams each had three shots for DePaul and Janina Locascio had two... Strickland and Williams each had a pair of shots on goal...DePaul is 4-2 in games decided by one goal.