Just one week after their playoff preview match against Gannon University, Slippery Rock women’s soccer took them on in round one of the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference (PSAC) playoffs.
The game went back and forth with SRU striking first late in the first half. Sophomore Libby Zacharyasz recorded her fifth goal of the season to send The Green and White to the locker room up one to nothing. The lead at half came despite being outshot nine to four.
Gannon continued to pressure the SRU net and eventually struck fifteen minutes into the second half.
Gannon’s leading scorer Brooklyn Respecki found her way onto the score sheet just four minutes later, giving Gannon the two-to-one lead.
The Rock was not done yet as junior Skylar Munnikhuysen matched Gannon’s tally in less than a minute.
The Munnikhuysen goal was assisted by graduate student Ashley Rea. This was Rea’s second assist of the game and second game in a row with multiple points against Gannon.
Rea’s hot end to the season was not enough for The Rock. They would ultimately allow two more from Gannon losing 4-2.
The White and Green hung strong for a large portion of the game even though they ended up being outshot 25 to seven. The on-target shots were tighter as Gannon posted eight compared to The Rock’s four.
Freshman goalkeeper Leah Allman impressed in her post-season debut making four saves during the Gannon onslaught.
While SRU may not have finished where they hoped they would, the future looks bright with important players returning for 2024.
Previously mentioned Ashley Rea will be missed especially after her late season surge. Along with Rea, senior Sydney Patrick will more than likely part ways with The Rock. Patrick ended the season leading the team in assists and points with 11 and 23 respectively. However, these two pass the torch to an impressive younger class.
Allman will be back for her sophomore season after gaining solid playoff performance this year.
The talented Morgan Sarver will also be back for her junior year in 2024. Sarver posted six goals and nine assists this year to make her the team’s third leading scorer.
Besides Rea, Patrick and Sarver leading the team in scoring, the three were named to the 2023 All-PSAC Women’s Soccer second team.
They were joined by three teammates in junior Faith Diffenbacher, senior Brooke Riefenstahl and junior Nina King.
These six highlight an impressive season that ended too short but gives hope for seasons to come.