Soccer splits series

[media-credit name=”Aimee Smith” align=”alignright” width=”300″][/media-credit]

Weber State University defender Mackenzie Day fights for a ball against the University of Montana’s Tyler Adair during a game over the weekend. WSU knocked off UM 1-0, and lost 3-0 to Montana State University.

The Weber State University women’s soccer team played two tough games last week against the University of Montana and Eastern Washington University, winning on Thursday and losing on Saturday.

Thursday afternoon, the Wildcats played a very close game against the UM Grizzlies. Throughout the first half, and most of the second half, both teams appeared evenly matched as neither team was able to score. With eight minutes remaining in the second half, junior Tianna Woodhead scored the first goal of the game for WSU. The Grizzlies attempted to come back and tie the game with three minutes left, but a diving save by sophomore goalkeeper Ryann Waldman proved to be the deciding factor, as the Wildcats were able to hold on to win 1-0.

On Saturday morning, Wildcat fans came out to watch WSU match up against the EWU Eagles. The Eagles got off to a quick start, with freshman Cassie Black scoring their first goal four minutes into the game. The Wildcats struggled heavily on offense throughout the first half, attempting nine shots on the goal, seven more times than the Eagles, but were unable to score. WSU’s offensive woes continued into the second half, as they found themselves stymied again and again by the Eagles’ junior goalkeeper, Jamie Walker. EWU was not to be stopped, as they scored twice in the first 15 minutes of the second half and held the Wildcats scoreless as they won 3-0. Not only did Saturday’s loss represent WSU’s first loss to a conference opponent of the season, but it was also EWU’s first win against a conference opponent for the season.

The biggest problem for the Wildcats Saturday was their offense, as they made almost four times as many shots as EWU but were unable to score once.

“We gave away too many goals,” said Head Coach Tim Crompton after the game. “You have to play every play. It’s about executing the whole time you are out there.”

Freshman Mackenzie Day said she felt the team performed well, and that the score does not represent how the game went.

“We did some good passes and we had a lot of shots on the goal,” Day said. “We just couldn’t get it in. Overall we did good; they just had some lucky shots.”

After the loss, the team still remained positive about how they performed. Senior Kylie Johnson said that, despite the loss, there were some pluses for the team.

“I think overall we did good things,” Johnson said. “We made some great passes and we moved the ball well. We just couldn’t finish.”

Despite Saturday’s loss, the Wildcats still remain in first place in the Big Sky Conference standings with two games remaining in the season. They are poised to return to the Big Sky Conference championships for the first time since they won the conference title in 2008.

On Thursday, the Wildcats will travel to Portland, Ore., where they will play against the Portland State University Vikings. After that game, the Wildcats will return home against the Sacramento State University Hornets in their final game of the regular season on the following Saturday. The Big Sky Tournament will begin play on Nov. 3.