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Rutgers women’s soccer fell to Florida State 1-0 on Friday night in the semifinals of the Women’s Soccer College Cup. The loss sees the Scarlet Knights season end one match short of the championship game.
It was a tremendous season for the Rutgers women’s program, who won the Big Ten regular season title and earned a No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament. The season showed continued growth from the program under head coach Mike O’Neil, who struggled to find the words at times following Friday night’s loss.
“It’s hard, it’s hard to find the words. I’m really proud, it was a great year. They were brilliant tonight, created chances, executed a gameplan and worked hard as a team. We talk about being 28 strong. We were 28 strong this season. Left nothing on the field; disappointed in the result but it’s been a historic year. We’re proud, very proud,” O’Neil said after the game.
“It hurts a bit with the seniors that have helped take this program to another level, both in the classroom and on the field.”
The women’s soccer program is undoubtedly the standard-bearer for success in the athletic department.
A second half goal by Florida State’s All-American Jaelin Howell was the difference in the match. It was at times a nervy match but a very even and tight, with Rutgers and Florida State each registering nine shots.
“I think starting out and going into this season when we started Day 1, we know there was something special,” captain Gaby Provenzano said.
“We knew that it was truly a family and that we were truly sisters and that no matter what, we were going to have each other’s backs through the ups and the downs. And that’s what carried us through this year.”