NOTRE DAME, Ind. — The 14th-ranked Notre Dame women’s soccer team lost a close battle to Wake Forest 1-0 Thursday night at Alumni Stadium to end its three-game winning streak.
The match was knotted at 0-0 until the 87th minute when the Deacons capitalized on a scramble play in their box. Shayla Smart collected the loose ball after a great service from Reese Kim. Smart got to the loose ball and fired the ball under the bar and into the back of the net. The first goal of the season for Smart gave the Demon Deacons the late lead they would not relinquish.
HOW IT HAPPENED
Notre Dame came out firing early on in the first half Thursday night, controlling much of the possession in their attacking half. The Irish tallied the first two shots of the night but nothing came of the opportunities.
Wake Forest settled in defensively and started to take some of the possession and pressure back onto the Irish.
Mattie Interian was tested a number of times by some great chances from the Demon Deacons. In the 26th minute, Giovanna DeMarco got past the Irish defense and had a one-on-one opportunity with Interian. Interian came out of the net but did not give up the line. She stayed low and was able to deflect DeMarco’s shot away for the save.
Moments later, it was DeMarco again with a great chance. She had a shot point blank on Interian inside the box but Interian was on the spot again, stayed low and deflected the shot away.
Less than a minute later, the Demon Deacons were awarded a penalty after an Irish foul occurred in the box. Faith Adams stepped to the spot and her attempt clanked off the left post and came back out. The Deacons could not grab the rebound and the score stayed level.
In the second half, the Irish had a great opportunity to break the tie in the opening 10 minutes. Olivia Wingate got a ball played into her in the box and she fired a shot towards the goal. The ball rocketed off the top bar and came back out and the Irish were unable to get the rebound into the goal.
Neither team really separated themselves from each other over the final 30 minutes until the waning moments of the match. Kim’s service into the box in the 87th minute got to the foot of Smart and found the back of the net to break the tie. It was the first goal the Irish had allowed since the season-opener against Florida State and it ultimately ended the three-game win streak.
The Irish will close out the fall home slate of their schedule this Sunday afternoon with a top-15 matchup against Clemson. The Tigers are ranked No. 4 in the most recent United Soccer Coaches poll and head into the matchup with a 4-2 overall record. Sunday’s match is set for a 1 p.m. ET start and will be streamed on the ACC Network Extra,