Rider ends season at 8-9, losing six straight

By Rich Saile

On April 17, the Rider Broncs looking to snap their losing streak hosted the #23 ranked Fairfield Stags. In the first quarter, Fairfield scored the first goal of the game off a turnover by the Broncs a little over four minutes into the game to put them 1-0. 

The Broncs were able to tie the game at 1-1 almost six minutes into the game by cashing in on a turnover by the Stags forced by Redshirt sophomore goalie Jamie Kubach, with junior midfielder Selena Carrington off a good clear attempt which was assisted by graduate student Emily Wesoky. Fairfield quickly scored and regained the lead in just 18 seconds which  was the first of five straight goals for Fairfield in the quarter in a span of five minutes.

 The Broncs were able to score their second goal of the game off a free-position shot by Wesoky which was her 17th goal of the season with the Broncs trailing 6-2 at the end of the first quarter. 

Heading into the second quarter, the Stags steamrolled the Broncs by scoring five goals in a span of six minutes to increase their lead tonine going up 11-2 halfway through the second quarter.

 Carrington scored her second goal of the game to help give the Broncs their third goal off a free-position shot. Fairfield would quickly score three more goals in a two minute stretch as they continued to attack the Broncs defense to extend their lead to 11. Carrington would score her third goal of the game which was her 36th goal of the season. The Broncs trailed 14-4 at the half as both teams went to the locker room. 

Coming out of the locker room, both teams had a combination of missed shots, turnovers and fouls mixed in for the first eight and half minutes of the third quarter where both defenses were stifling.

 The Broncs were able to get the first goal of the half off a free-position shot from graduate student attacker Anna Devlin which gave the Broncs their fifth goal of the game. 

Fairfield would only score one goal in the quarter while the Broncs added two more goals in the last two minutes and 30 seconds of the quarter. Graduate student attacker Kylee Garcia and junior attacker Toni Gismondi got their first goals of the game as the Broncs trailed 15-7 going into the fourth quarter.

 In the fourth quarter, both teams scored four goals apiece with the Broncs’ last four goals scored in a four and a half minute stretch. Redshirt freshman attacker Annabelle Niebuhr scored two goals for the Broncs while Devlin added her second goal of the game and freshman midfielder Elena Bontatibus scored her only goal of the game. The Broncs would extend their losing streak to five games as they lost 19-11. 

Closing out Canisius

On April 21,  the Broncs hosted Senior day in the final regular season game as the Canisius Golden Griffins. Rider started the game scoring three goals in the first five minutes of the game. 

Bontatibus scored two of the Broncs three goals while Devlin scored the other to give the Broncs an early 3-0 lead. Shortly after, Canisius went on a 10-0 run that lasted from the midway point of the first quarter to the early minutes of the third quarter which included the last six goals of the first quarter and a second quarter in which the Broncs did not score a goal while Canisius scored three. 

Canisius took a 9-3 lead going into the locker room and scored the first goal of the second half two minutes in to go up 10-3. The Broncs finally broke the drought when Gismondi scored off a free-position shot 30 minutes in the game. 

Canisius ended up scoring two more goals in the third quarter while the Broncs got another goal in the third thanks to Wesoky scoring her 17th goal of the season off a good clear attempt as the Broncs trailed 12-5 going into the fourth quarter. 

The Broncs were able to score five goals in the fourth with Gismondi adding her second goal of the game and Wesoky scoring her first of the game. Redshirt sophomore Katie Walsh, Garcia, and Carrington each scored a goal in the quarter but Canisius scored four more goals in the fourth quarter to ultimately pull away with the win 16-10. 

The Broncs ended their season losing their last six games of the season in MAAC play but had an early strong start from the non-conference games where they were able to win starting the season at 6-2 before MAAC play where they ended up going 2-7 in their final nine games. The Broncs ended the season at 8-9 with a 6-4 record at home while going 2-5 on the road.  Broncs are only losing three members for next season, but next year’s roster is going to increase with 19 freshmen coming in for a team that concluded its first season in the MAAC and played  a season that had a strong first half but a disappointing second half to end a game under .500. 

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