Oct. 18, 2008
The University of New Mexico women's soccer team dropped a hard-fought match to Mountain West Conference leader BYU 2-1 today. The Lobos outshot BYU 15-6 and had six corners to Cougars' three, but could not keep up on the scoreboard. New Mexico falls to 7-5-4 on the year and 2-3-0 in MWC action.
The Lobos came out of the gate clicking on both sides of the ball for the first 30 minutes of the match. New Mexico nearly got on the board first when freshman Jennifer Williams took a ball over the top from sophomore Alexis Ball in the 24th minute. Williams tried to chip the ball over BYU keeper McKinzie Olson who had come off her line, but the attempt went just over the crossbar.
The Lobo defense was just as impressive, not allowing a shot for the first 32 minutes of the match. Unfortunately for New Mexico, the first shot they did allow resulted in a 1-0 lead for the Cougars in the 32nd minute. Katie Hodgkiss picked up a loose ball in the midfield and blasted a shot from 40 yards out. Her strike was nailed perfectly in the upper right corner, putting New Mexico in a 1-0 hole.
That was the only shot UNM allowed to BYU in the first 45 minutes. New Mexico took three of their own, but could not get the equalizer in the first half. The Lobos were determined not to give up in the second half, coming out of the locker room on the attack.
Senior Hannah Hand nearly knotted up the score in the 46th minute. She took a shot from 35 yards out that hit the crossbar. Two inches lower and the score would have been 1-1. New Mexico kept attacking and it paid off two minutes later.
After getting to the endline on the left side, New Mexico sent in a cross that BYU seemed to clear over the goal line. Ball kept with the play and crossed the ball in front of the box again, to the surprise of the BYU defenders. Freshman Amanda Collins was waiting in front of the net to put in her third goal of the season.
The Lobos' strike was the first goal allowed by BYU since Sept. 26. The Cougars had posted five consecutive shutouts coming into today's match.
BYU picked up the pressure for the next 10 minutes of the match. In the 59th minute they earned a throw in on the left side in Lobo territory. Kassidy Christensen placed a perfect ball to Katie Larkin in the box, 10 yards out. Larkin settled with one touched, turned and fired near post for the 2-1 lead.
The Lobos tried to get the equalizing score. Hand nearly tied it up again in the 82nd minute. Her shot from 30 yards out was just inches over the crossbar.
With the win, BYU improves to 12-5-0 on the season and 2-3-0 in MWC play. New Mexico's next match is Friday, Oct. 24, at 5:30 p.m. (MT) against San Diego State at the UNM Soccer Complex. It will be Senior and Think Pink Day for the Lobos.