GREENSBORO, N.C. – The UNCG women’s soccer team suffered its first Southern Conference loss of the year Sunday afternoon as the Spartans dropped a 2-0 decision to Furman at Stone Soccer Stadium. The loss drops the Spartans to 4-6-1 on the year and 1-1-0 in SoCon play. UNCG returns home to Greensboro Friday night when it hosts ETSU in its SoCon home opener at 7 p.m.
Furman (6-2-1, 2-0-0 SoCon) struck first, scoring the game-winning goal just 4:21 into the game off a corner kick. Rachel Shah sent a ball towards the near post where Treva Aycock was able to flick it past freshman goalkeeper Aiyanah Tyler-Cooper (Charlottesville, Va./Albermarle) for the early 1-0 lead.
The teams traded chances back-and-forth for most of the first half with the Spartan’s starting to control play late in the first half. UNCG started to come to life late in the half as it earned five corner kicks in the opening 45 minutes. Sophomore Grace Regal (Ellicott City, Md./Howard) had a chance inside the 18-yard box in the 43rd minute but Furman goalkeeper Kellsey Weaver stepped up to make the save. Junior defender Emily Jensen (Nelson, New Zealand/Santa Clara) had a chances seconds later in the 44th minute off a corner kick but her header sailed just wide of the goal.
Furman extended its lead to 2-0 early in the second half as the Paladin took advantage of a tough foul call on the Spartans at the top of the 18-yard box that awarded Furman a penalty kick in the 55th minute of play. Shah stepped forward for the Paladins and drilled the kick from the spot into the side netting, giving Furman an all important insurance goal.
The Spartans’ best chance in the second half came in the 80th minute after the Spartans had a corner kick. UNCG regrouped after the first chance and sophomore Cienna Rideout (Las Vegas, Nev./Coronado) had a go from 15-yards out but again Weaver was able to post the save to secure the shutout. Weaver finished with five saves in the victory while Taylor-Cooper posted four saves in the loss.