The University of Connecticut women’s soccer team claimed the 2016 American Athletic Conference Championship trophy Sunday, after defeating Southern Methodist University 1-0 in the finals at Joseph J. Morrone Stadium.
Senior Rachel Hill (Rollinsford, N.H.) was named Most Outstanding Offensive Player after she scored the game-winning goal in the 40th minute. Fellow senior Toriana Patterson (Yorktown Heights, N.Y.) was deemed Most Outstanding Defensive Player, seeing all 180 minutes of postseason play and helping UConn to back-to-back shutouts.
This is UConn’s second American Athletic Conference Championship in three years; they also claimed the title in 2014. The Huskies have 12 conference championships in program history. Sunday’s match marked the first time in AAC Women’s Soccer Championship history that the championship game was decided in regulation time.
In a relatively low action game, UConn held just a 3-1 edge on shots after 30 minutes had elapsed. Hill notched the game-winning goal, her second goal of the postseason tournament, in the 40th minute, off a long ball from sophomore Kim Urbanek (Lonnerstadt, Germany).
The UConn defense held off eight SMU shots in the second half, as the Mustangs searched for the equalizer. Senior goalkeeper Emily Armstrong (Collegeville, Pa.) had another three-save performance, to earn her second consecutive postseason shutout, her 11th overall shutout of the season.
Armstrong, Hill, and Patterson were named to the 2016 American Athletic Conference All-Tournament team, along with senior Stephanie Ribeiro (Pawtucket, R.I.) and junior Tanya Altrui (Branford, Conn.).
UP NEXT …
The Huskies punched their ticket to their 31st NCAA tournament appearance, earning an automatic bid Sunday. Tune in to the NCAA women’s soccer selection show on Monday, Nov. 7 at 4:30 p.m. to find out where UConn falls in the 2016 NCAA bracket.