Rowan Women’s Soccer Ends First Game of Season With a Draw

Emma DeMaise helps Julianna Giordano up after she made a goal-saving play. Giordano's stop prevented a Lynchburg victory as the game ended in a 1-1 draw. Friday, September 2, 2022. - Multimedia Editor / Lee Kotzen

New faces and new regulations were the difference makers in the Rowan women’s soccer team’s first matchup of the 2022 season. 

On Friday, September 2, the Profs kicked off their season against the University of Lynchburg on their home field in Glassboro. After exactly 90 minutes of play, the game ended in a 1-1 draw. 

The two teams would have gotten some extra time to break the tie in past years. However, due to changes made by the NCAA back in April, no regular season games will be allowed to go into overtime.

“I actually like the rule because we play so many games in a short period of time,” Head Coach Scott Leacott said. “They [Lynchburg] used a lot of players, they’re a senior [led] team, juniors and seniors. We’re all freshmen and sophomores. So I think it stunk not to close out the game, but we got a result from one of the best teams in the country.”

Despite the fact that the Profs left the field with a draw added to their record rather than a loss, Rowan had the lead up until the 86-minute mark. 

14 minutes into her time playing for the Profs, freshman Olivia Giordano put the first goal of the game, as well as her collegiate career, into the net. 

Olivia Giordano put the Profs in a winning position on the offensive side, but it was her twin sister Julianna Giordano who made her presence known on the defensive end. Julianna made an impressive stop right near the Profs’ goal that prevented Lynchburg from getting on the board in the first half.

“That’s what they’ve [Olivia and Julianna Giordano] been doing all preseason,” Coach Leacott said. “They have one motor and that’s fast and they’re not shy physically. They just love to play and they just get after the game so well, they just love to be out here and it shows. And we knew right away when we recruited them they would have an opportunity to play right off the bat. They earned it.”

Rowan’s defense kept Lynchburg scoreless through most of the game, but it was clear that more time was being spent in Profs’ territory. That gave the Hornets more opportunities to score.

In the second period, Lynchburg had eight shots compared to Rowan’s four. On Lynchburg’s seventh shot with 3:51 left in regulation, Ida Swisher finally found the net, tying the game at 1-1.

“I feel like we were getting a little bit out of control,” Julianna Giordano said. “We were just trying to relax but everything was just so amped up with the last five minutes of the game and we were all just trying to relax but it’s hard when the crowd’s going crazy and the pressure’s on.”

That was where the game stood when the clock hit zero, leaving the first game played in the Profs’ 2022 season in a draw. While it wasn’t a victory, it was a step in the right direction for this very young team.

“I knew we were going to hit some growing pains because there were times that we had six, seven freshmen on the field. So you’re going to hit growing pains,” Coach Leacott said. “When these kids gain that experience, we’re going to be lights out.”

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