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IOWA CITY, Iowa — Illinois scored a goal in both halves to spoil the University of Iowa soccer team’s Senior Day with a 2-1 victory Sunday afternoon at the Iowa Soccer Complex.
“Unfortunately as a team we chose to be flat for the first time all year,” said UI head coach Dave DiIanni. “Mentality-wise and physically we were beat before we even stepped out on the field. I will give credit to our subs who came in and brought some energy to the back end of the first half and the beginning of the second half.”
Kara Marbury’s goal off a cross from Reagan Robinshaw in the 19th minute gave Illinois the early lead. The Illini held off the Iowa offense to take a 1-0 advantage into halftime.
In the 84th minute Taylore Peterson took charge, scoring an unassisted goal, to give Illinois a 2-0 lead with less than 10 minutes left in the match.
Eager to catch up, the Hawkeyes made several attempts, eventually scoring in the 87th minute off. Freshman Natalie Winters had her second strike of the season following an assist from Devin Burns. Iowa was unable to net the equalizer, giving Illinois its first road win of the season.
“We were a little too late not getting the first goal until the end,” said DiIanni. “We need to learn to be better prepared physically and mentally earlier on in the game. This is a game we thought we could win, but in the end Illinois was better than us today.”
The Fighting Illini finished with a 11-8 edge in shots, eight being on goal. Freshman Claire Graves made six saves in the match for Iowa.
Four seniors — Amanda Lulek, Bri Toelle, Tory Hartman, and Natalie Krygier — were honored before playing their final match at the Iowa Soccer Complex.
“We had a great group of seniors in terms of their collective careers,” said DiIanni. “Amanda has been a contributor for four years, Tory Harman as well, and we added Natalie, who I thought had one of her best games this year. Bri is the leading goal scorer this year and has been a contributor for four years. Both on and off the field we are really proud to have had them apart of the Hawkeye program.”
The Hawkeyes (7-10-0, 1-8-0) return to action Friday taking on Maryland in College Park. Match time is set for 4 p.m. (CT).