By: Mason Bugaresti
The Carleton Ravens women’s soccer team was eliminated from the 2022 OUA playoffs Wednesday night at TAAG Park losing 1-0 to the Nipissing Lakers in extra time.
“I’m so proud of our team. There’s nothing more I could say about our effort. [Nipissing] is a great team and we stuck with them for 120 minutes,” Carleton head coach Dom Oliveri said after the match.
This one was a chess match right from the get-go. Oliveri had Carleton set up perfectly defensively, clogging the middle of the field to stop the Lakers’ dangerous, slow buildup attacking style. On the other side, the Lakers played a very high defensive line which hindered Carleton’s ability to get out on the counterattack and use their pace down the wings.
Chances were hard to come by in the opening half. Ravens’ captain Chloe Doherty (Ottawa, Ont.) took a pass from Chloe Doiron (Dieppe, N.B.) and fired a shot on net in the 19th minute, but Nipissing goalkeeper Taylor Mitchener (London, Ont.) made a huge stop to deny Doherty.
The 0-0 stalemate continued into the second half as both teams stayed disciplined in keeping their respective formations. Nipissing began to generate chances in the second half, but the Raven defence stayed solid keeping traffic away from the Carleton goal. 90 minutes of soccer solved nothing, and this one required extra time in this loser-goes-home match.
In the second half of extra time, the Lakers found the winning goal off a 110th minute corner kick. Carleton pushed hard for an equalizer in the final 10 minutes of the match but could not find a way through the Nipissing defence. With the win, the Lakers eliminate the Ravens and move on to the quarterfinals where they will face the Queen’s Gaels.
Despite the loss, there was a positive environment in TAAG Park as the fans gave the Ravens a final send-off standing ovation.
“We’re in a way better spot as a program than we were one year ago. We’re only losing 4 graduating players so I’m really excited to run it back next season with this core and some key additions,” Oliveri said.