Blue Demons Fall in NCAA Tournament
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - The DePaul women’s soccer team dropped a 2-1 decision to the Purdue Boilermakers on a chilly Friday evening in the first round of the NCAA Tournament. The Boilermakers scored a goal in each half and fought a late Blue Demon rally to advance to Sunday’s second round match.
Purdue struck early with a tap-in off a corner kick at 10:12. Courtney Coppedege knocked in the ball after a deflection in front of DePaul keeper Lindsey Deason. Jayme-Lee Biamonte and Annette Kente were credited with assists on the corner kick play.
The Blue Demons didn’t back down as they put together shots for Lauren Spacht and Julianne Sitch, but couldn’t find the net either time with 30 minutes left in the opening half.
At the 26:30 mark, Amy Witt found Sitch and fed her a pass through the Purdue defense. Sitch went for the short corner of the net and kicked it just wide of the left post in DePaul’s best opportunity of the first half.
The Blue Demons kept the pressure on as Katie Kiene found a diving Sitch in the box for a header but it was knocked wide by the Purdue defense. Off the rebound, Erin Walter fired a shot in, but it was saved by Purdue keeper Lauren Mason with just under 20 minutes left in the half.
Both teams went back-and-forth over the final 20 minutes each creating opportunities, but coming up empty. The Boilermakers outshot the Blue Demons, 10-8, in the first half while Deason tallied three saves and Mason was credited with four stops.
DePaul nearly tied the match three minutes into the second half, but Margo Sackmaster’s header was just wide left off a cross from Shana Mills. Purdue came right back as Coppedge’s attempt for her second goal of the afternoon was wide of the left post with just over 40 minutes left in regulation.
Annette Kent nearly put Purdue (13-5-3) up 2-0 as she beat a DePaul defender, but her shot sailed right. Two minutes later, the Boilermakers got their second goal as Kent found Jennie Moppert cutting across the top of the box and she fired a shot past Deason into the lower right corner at 68:37.
The Blue Demons broke through in the 78th minute off a corner kick from Erin Davren. After a scrum in front of the net, Amber Prindle knocked it in for her second goal of the season. Davren’s serve into the box was knocked around until Prindle sent it home to cut the Purdue lead to 2-1.
DePaul (14-7-2) nearly tied the match with just under eight minutes left as Sackmaster’s header was knocked out to the goal by the Purdue defense. That would be the last opportunity the Blue Demons would get in the match as the score ended, 2-1.
Both teams took 10 shots in the second half giving the Boilermakers a 20-18 advantage overall. Deason made seven saves while Mason finished with nine and both teams took four corner kicks.
The Blue Demons finish the season by rewriting the eight-year old recordbook. Among the records set this season were wins, goals, shutouts and goals against average. DePaul also won their first Conference USA title and played in the program’s first NCAA Tournament match.