DURHAM, N.H. – Caroline Dixon scored her first goal of the season in the 50th minute as the University of New Hampshire women's soccer team suffered a 1-0 defeat against the University of Hartford on Senior Day in their regular-season finale Sunday afternoon at Lewis Fields.
The Wildcats wrap up their regular season at 8-7-4, including 4-3-1 in America East play, while the Hawks improve to 7-8-3 overall and 4-4-2 in the conference. The 'Cats, who would have been the No. 2 seed in next week's America East Championship tournament with a win, have earned the fifth seed and will play at the University at Albany on Thursday, Oct. 28. Hartford is the No. 3 seed and will play host to Maine on the same day.
With the game scoreless 4:47 into the second half, Dixon received a pass from Shealagh Begley in the middle of the box and popped a shot off the middle of the crossbar. The shot ricocheted straight down toward the goal line and was ruled a goal by the linesman on the far side of the field.
UNH had a similar play in the closing minutes of the first half. With 2:15 remaining, senior Cassie Guerra (DeWitt, N.Y.) drove a ball toward the far post off a restart, and junior Allie Rozelle (Stratham, N.H.), who was running along the goal line, kicked the ball off the inside of the right post. No goal ruling was made and Hartford cleared the ball away.
The Wildcats had a chance to tie the game with under a minute to play in regulation when Hartford goalkeeper Lauren Brodeur and junior Jordyn Krall (Duxbury, Mass.) raced after a loose ball in the box. Krall, who had reached the ball first, was unable to get a shot off as a Hartford defender fell down in front of her and was injured.
The first opportunity of the game for UNH came in the 17th minute when a point-blank shot from sophomore Chelsea Kuss (Warners, N.Y.) was saved by Brodeur on the left side of the net.
The Hawks had a pair of chances late in the opening half. With 8:15 to play Arielle Aikens received a through ball on the right side of the box, but freshman goalkeeper Erica Correa (Cheshire, Conn.) elevated to make the save on her high shot to the middle of the net.
Then with 4:30 remaining, Aikens and Correa chased after a ball on the left side of the box. Aikens reached it first and chipped a shot over Correa toward the empty net, but the ball sailed just over the crossbar.
Correa and Brodeur each made four saves.
UNH held a 12-9 shot advantage, including 6-4 in the second half, and also held a 6-2 edge in corner kicks.
The Wildcats, who honored their five-member senior class of Guerra, Amy Avitabile (Pembroke, Mass.), Ashley Avitabile (Pembroke, Mass.), Marika Posehn (Duncan, British Columbia) and Carole LeBlanc (Grand-Digue, New Brunswick) before the match, return to action Thursday, Oct. 28 in the quarterfinal round of the America East Championship against Albany at Varsity Field. Game time has yet to be announced.