The good news: Women’s Soccer scored their first road goal in MAC play after a trio of 1-0 road losses (against, for what it’s worth, perhaps the top three teams in the conference).
The bad news: Carissima Cutrona’s early goal didn’t hold up in the 2-1 loss at Western Michigan, and Volleyball dropped a straight-set loss to Northern Illinois that featured little to write home about.
The Volleyball loss was a step back from a team that had grown steadily more potent over the last month-ish, even if it came against one of the MAC’s top teams in the Huskies. UB hit under .050 for the match, had five serve receive errors and four service errors to no aces, and totaled only six blocks on the night.
The Bulls led 1-0 to open the night in DeKalb and never led again. Valisha Watkins paced the offense, not only leading with 7 kills, but also with 10 errors in attack on 28 swings. Cassie Shado’s three solo blocks are pretty much the highlight of the box score.
Cutrona’s early goal tonight appeared a game-changer for Women’s Soccer, who have conceded early goals in multiple road losses this season.
But WMU’s Emma Kahn also scored on the Broncos’ first shot on target, and Western largely controlled the first half, with three corner kicks in quick succession later in the stanza and a second goal, perhaps off a weird bounce off a Bulls defender, in the 35th minute.
Buffalo was able to play more evenly with the Broncos in the second - halftime improvements are a hallmark of the Burke era - but forced Stephanie Heber to make only two further saves and remain winless on the road in conference play this year.
Julia Benati remains out for the Bulls, and today Moira Petrie and Carly Zoccali notched multiple shots in support of Cutrona, who continues to generate offense without another consistent threat to relieve some pressure.
The two UB teams will pass each other this weekend, staying on the road and swapping places with Women’s Soccer facing NIU and Volleyball headed to Kalamazoo for the Broncos.