Brandeis battles Chicago to 1-1 draw at home

Melissa Darling '16

In a hard-fought, well-played contest by both sides, neither Brandeis nor Chicago were able to break the deadlock, as the Judges and Maroons played to a 1-1 draw at Gordon Field. Brandeis is now 9-6-2, 1-3-2 in the UAA, while Chicago, ranked 25th in the country by d3soccer.com, moves to 11-3-3, 3-1-2 in conference play.

After an uneventful first half, the action quickly picked up during the second frame. In the 59th minute, a shot by Chicago senior Micaela Harms (Corona del Mar, Calif./Mater Dei) from the left side of the box rattled the Brandeis crossbar and shot straight down. Chicago junior Sara Kwan (Irvine, Calif./University) beat the Brandeis defense to the rebound and knocked it over the line for her team-leading eighth goal of the season.

Brandeis leveled the score just nine minutes later. Junior forward Sapir Edalati (Great Neck, N.Y./Great Neck South) corralled a Maroon goal kick and headed it forward to sophomore Melissa Darling (Weymouth, Mass./Weymouth). Darling coolly touched it past one defender and tucked the ball into the far corner of the net for her third tally of the season.

Both sides had chances to win the contest in regular time. Chicago had another loose ball in front of the Brandeis net in the 76th minute, but junior keeper Michelle Savuto (Ridgewood, N.J./Ridgewood) came off her line to clean up the mess. Harms' 79th-minute shot was also saved by Savuto, while Chicago junior Jacinda Reid (San Antonio, Texas/Reagan) grabbed a header by sophomore Holly Szafran (Newton, Mass./Newton North) on the Brandeis counter-attack. In total, the Maroons outshot the Judges, 6-5 in the second half.

Brandeis had the majority of the opportunities in overtime, but failed to convert. Szafran nearly one-timed the ball home in the 92nd minute, but her strike went just over the bar. Rookie midfielder Julia McDermott (Hopedale, Mass./Hopedale) beat her marker in the 102nd minute, but her shot also sailed high. Chicago's best opportunity came in the 109th, but a free kick by senior Natalia Jovanovic (Gurnee, Ill./Warren) was driven right at Savuto.

Savuto made five saves for the Judges, including three in the two overtime periods. Reid had five saves as well for the Maroons. Each team took four corner kicks and put six shots on frame.

Brandeis will host NYU for senior day next Saturday at 2:30 p.m. Chicago will honor its seniors as well next Saturday, as the Maroons take on Washington University in St. Louis.