Thanks to excellent goalkeeping and a stunning goal by Dani Rhodes, the No. 10 Wisconsin women’s soccer team (16-3-2) took a thrilling 1-0 victory over the No. 12 Duke Blue Devils Friday to advance to its second consecutive Sweet 16 appearance.
The first half was a defensive struggle, and Wisconsin out-shot Duke 3-2. Wisconsin continually applied excellent pressure, but Duke was able to deflect crossing passes before any damage could be done. The first half ended with only one save by Duke’s goalkeeper Brooke Heinsohn, and Badger goalie Jordyn Bloomer recorded zero saves in the half.
Duke came out on fire in the second half, however, pestering Bloomer with five shots on goal in the half. Many of these were quality looks, and Duke gained serious momentum in the second half.
That is until Dani Rhodes, the B1G leader in game-winning goals earned another one. Surrounded by five Blue Devils, she pivoted and, while sliding, struck the ball to the far post past the diving Heinsohn.
Duke’s offensive attack intensified after the Rhodes goal, and the Badgers defense continued to hold. Bloomer sealed the victory with a diving save in the 89th minute.
Badgers will take on the winner of No. 7 UCLA and Clemson Sunday at 6 p.m. CST.