The hunt for a Red October

Cincinnati 1
St. John’s 0

Kristin Russell will have to wait for another shot to
chip away at the St. John’s all-time shutouts record.

The Red Storm’s sophomore goalkeeper entered Sunday’s game against Cincinnati with 15 career
shutouts, four shy of tying the program record. But with time winding down in the first half, Bearcats forward Evi
Ranson scored the game’s only goal on a header just out of Russell’s reach after multiple players volleyed for possession deep in the Red Storm’s goalkeeper’s box.

Though St. John’s outshot the Bearcats, 17-7, the team had just eight shots on goal, and was held
scoreless by Cincinnati goalkeeper Andrea Kaminski.

“It was disappointing that we couldn’t come back and tie the game or even win,”
Russell said.

Though Russell shut out Louisville on Friday night, and while the record looms, Russell is focused on simply giving the team the best chance to win as the team advances through
conference play.

“I don’t even think about [the record], to be honest,” she said.

The Red Storm’s best offensive opportunity came late in the second half, when freshman forward Runa Stif Stefansdottir lured Kaminski out of the net, but the Cincinnati defense swarmed the box and did not let Stefansdottir penetrate with a goal.

“We possessed the ball pretty well, but sometimes in college soccer it isn’t about who possess the ball better – it’s the team that wants it more and I give Cincinnati credit for wanting it,” head coach Ian Stone said.

Once again, strong defensive play aided the Red Storm in contending with the Bearcats, the team that knocked St. John’s out of the Big East Tournament last year. Entering Sunday, the Bearcats had scored at least two goals in five of their last six games.

“Our defense is really good and our goalkeeper is really good and I thought we pretty much played well defensively,” Stone said. “In a game like today’s, we needed our defenders to actually start our offense and get the ball on the ground which was a little disappointing to begin with. We’re always going to be in games because we aren’t going to concede many goals, but we need to do it on the other end of the field.”

Despite the team’s multiple offensive chances – eight Red Storm players took shots, including midfielder Raelynne Lee, who led the team with five – they came too few and far between for the Red Storm to build momentum against such a high-powered offensive opponent.

“We need to come out a little bit stronger from the start,” Stone said. “If we come out with energy, it’s difficult for teams to play against us because we’d have the ball the whole time and I think we gave them a little bit of hope in not being as crisp as we could have been.”

The Red Storm’s lack of ferocity early in games has been a problem so far this season, one Stone will look to fix before the team leaves for a four-game road trip elapsing the entire month of October.

“We’ve been successful, and we have to recognize that every game we play from now on, we’re playing against good teams,” Stone said. “We can’t be complacent. We have to keep pushing forward.”