On Saturday, the season officially ended for the women’s soccer team, as the Judges were defeated by Farmingdale State College in the first round of the NCAA Division III tournament. With this close to their season, the 19th-ranked Judges achieved a season record 12–5, and the 25th-ranked Rams improved to 17–3–3 and went on to to play at the College of New Jersey on Sunday, according to the Brandeis Athletics website. Ultimately, the results of this game came down to one shot from the Rams and led to a score of 1–0 for the game that took place at the College of New Jersey.

The game was off to a quick start when  Framingham State’s Alyssa Parrotta took a  shot only one minute into the game. This effort was saved by Sierra Dana ’20, and the game continued without any shots for over four minutes. Soon, Lauren Mastandrea ’22 would take two shots in an attempt to put the Judges on the scoreboard, but one was blocked by Farmingdale State and the other was wide. At 10:49 Sam Volpe ’19 would take a shot in an another attempt at scoring for the Judges, but this was saved by Farmingdale State’s Daniella Ford. After another shot from Parrotta was saved by Dana, substitutions began to be made for both teams and at 18:00 there was a yellow card on Farmingdale State’s Julissa Martinez. No further attempted shots were made until 32:01, with one by Julia Jaffe ’19 that was blocked, and 35:57, during which another shot by Mastandrea was also blocked. Ford saved another shot, this time by Jaffe at 35:59, and a header by Daria Bakhtiari ’21 went wide. 

Up to this point, the Judges led in shots, but neither team was able to muster up any points. However this changed at 42:53. Farmingdale State’s Tara Lyons was able to make her way to a ball that was loose in the Judges defensive zone. After dribbling the ball to around 25-yards out, she shot. This shot would deflect off a defender and hit the underside of the crossbar before a referee decided that it had crossed the line, giving the Rams a point. After this, the Rams led 1–0, a lead that would be maintained the rest of the game. The first period would end not long after that shot.

In the second half of play, the Judges attempted to make up for that point the Rams gained at the end of the first. Sasha Sunday ’19 would attempt a header shot that was saved by Ford at 53:05, but neither team would be able to shoot until 69:02, and during that time the Rams and the Judges both had fouls. When Emily Thiem ’19  attempted a shot, it was too wide. Katie Hayes ’20 would come back quickly at 70:03 with an attempted header, but this was saved by Ford. There was another lull in shooting until 79:22, and during this time the Rams had two fouls against them and the Judges had one. A shot by Juliette Carriero ’22 saved by Ford would proceed yet another foul on the Judges. The game would conclude in the final minute with two final attempted shots for the Judges. One from Becca Buchman ’19 was too high and the other from Thiem was saved by Ford.

The Judges were in possession of the ball in the offensive zone for most of the games and outshot the Rams in both the first and second halves. In fact, during  the second half, the Rams were not able to take any shots. Thus, the Judges did have many opportunities to make up for the goal when the second half arrived. Even in the final minute of play, the team had two attempts at shots. In addition to their massive shooting advantage, the Judges had six corner kicks and the Rams would only have three.

The Judges did have a relatively strong defensive game, on the whole, as Dana would make two saves in the first half, although the Rams did score with her in the goal. Victoria Richardson ’20 would be in the goalbox for the second half of the game and there was no need to make any saves, mostly because Brandeis played an offensive game in the second half. Mastandrea led the Judges in shots taken as she took three. What ended up securing the win for Farmingdale State though, were the six saves made by Ford.

The NCAA tournament did not end with the success that the Judges had seen four years prior when the Judges had made it to the second round of the NCAA tournament. In 2017, the Judges fell to Williams College in the second round after conquering Stevens Institute of Technology. In 2016, the Judges would not be defeated until the National Semifinals, when they fell to Washington University in Saint Louis in the final four. In 2015, the Judges fell to William Smith College in the sweet sixteen, and in 2014 the Judges fell in the second round of the NCAA tournament against Misericordia University. However, the Judges fought hard in this game and have had a very successful season. Their final record of 12–5 is proof of the many victories that they did have in 2018.