The University of Wisconsin women’s soccer team (13-3-4, 6-2-3 Big Ten) beat the Memphis Tigers (17-4-0, 7-2-0 AAC) in Memphis, Tennessee for a first-round win in the NCAA Tournament.
For Wisconsin this is the second straight year they’ve advanced to the round of 32 — beating Toledo 5–0 to kick off last year’s tournament before falling 1–0 to No. 1 seed South Carolina in the next round.
The scoring began early in the first period for the Badgers when forward Cameron Murtha hit the back of the net in the 26th minute off an assist from defender Payton Wesley.
Though this was all the offense Wisconsin would need on the night, goalkeeper Jordyn Bloomer received some more help with second-half scores from forward Dani Rhodes and midfielder Maia Cella.
To take the 2–0 lead, Rhodes slid and snuck a slow rolling shot past Memphis keeper Elizabeth Moberg in the 55th minute for her third straight game with a score and her sixth goal of the year. Cella’s goal came soon after in the 61st minute off a rebound from a deflected Rhodes shot, capping the game off at 3–0.
Bloomer excelled as a goalkeeper, saving all six of the Memphis shots on goal for her first career postseason shutout. But the unsung heroes were the Badger defenders who helped Wisconsin dominate ball control throughout as the team outshot Memphis 14–9.
Most notably, the Badgers were able to tame the offensive tandem of Samantha Murphy and Clarissa Larisey. The two forwards accounted for just three combined shots with Larisey mounting the only one on goal.
Up next for the Badgers are the Hofstra University Pride, who upset No. 4 seed Boston College in their first-round matchup. The match will be played Friday at 6:35 p.m. on Stanford’s campus in Palo Alto, California. Live scoring and statistic updates will be available from @badgerwsoccer on Twitter and Instagram.