Last Chance for Chicago to Rebound Before Post Season

Coming off of a 1–0 loss to No. 16 Carnegie Mellon, the No. 8 women’s soccer team has one last chance to rebound before the playoffs. They head to Wash U to take on the Bears this weekend.

By Maggie O'hara

All eyes look to the No. 8 Maroons this coming weekend as they face off against their rival, No. 10 Wash U. It also just so happens that the Bears sit atop the UAA conference. If there’s ever been a perfect time to take a win at Wash U, it’s this weekend.

The current standings feature Wash U (13–2–2; 4–1–1 UAA) at the forefront of the conference with 13 points and Chicago (15–2; 4–2 UAA) one tick under, tied with Carnegie Mellon at 12 points. Thus the final configuration of the standings is dependent on Saturday’s games. The Maroons have a chance to clinch a share of their first UAA title since 2010 with a win this weekend.

The South Siders have been a powerhouse in the UAA all season, suffering only two losses in hard-fought games. Though this past weekend they weren’t able to come away with a win over Carnegie, they feel confident going into this coming weekend.

“This weekend was bittersweet,” third-year Caroline Olivero said. “I thought we played some of the best soccer I’ve seen since joining the UChicago women’s soccer team my freshman year. I felt that we dominated Case Western and Carnegie on the field, though the Carnegie game was certainly more of a battle—physically and emotionally. Though we ultimately lost to Carnegie in overtime, I couldn’t be more proud of the team and what we put forward.”

The Maroons are clicking and firing on all cylinders right now and are ready to take a game from Wash U and build momentum going into the postseason. They’re eager to finish the season on a positive note and taking a game from their rival and hopefully solidifying a UAA title would certainly be positive. The Bears lead the all-time meetings 14–11–2 and have won the last five straight.

“We still have a chance at the UAA title, something this program hasn’t achieved since 2010. We need to beat Wash U to make this possible,” Olivero said. “I think we can do it. I want this UAA title, shared or not, because it is such an accomplishment in our tough league and would be a true testament to the talent and work ethic of our team. It is the next step on our journey to the NCAA championships and I couldn’t be more confident in the women I have playing beside me in achieving these ends.”

For the Maroons to receive an automatic berth to the NCAA postseason via the Association title, it would necessitate a Chicago win over Wash U and a Carnegie loss or tie to Case Western Reserve. In the case of a tie between Carnegie and Chicago for the UAA title, Carnegie would receive the berth, as they won the head-to-head. If the Maroons don’t receive an automatic berth, they will have to wait until Monday’s selection show to find out their future.

Chicago will take the field for the final time during the regular season in St. Louis at Francis Field at 4:30 p.m. CDT on Saturday.