POSTED: Sunday, April 15, 2012 - 5:44pm
UPDATED: Sunday, April 15, 2012 - 6:25pm
The UTEP soccer team battled Pacific 12 member Arizona to a 1-1 tie in its final home exhibition match of the spring at University Field Sunday.
Jade Babcock put the Miners up 1-0 with a goal off a feed from Tess Hall in the 39th minute but the Wildcats found the equalizer three minutes later courtesy of Shannon Heinzler.
UTEP outshot the visitors, 14-7, including 8-2 in tries on goal during the 70-minute exhibition (two 35-minute halves).
Both teams registered a shot in the early stages of the first half, but each try was off target. Play then started to settle down, with action being contested in the middle portion of the pitch.
UTEP strung together a couple of passes to set up Hall up on the right wing in the ninth minute. She lofted a cross over the outstretched hands of the goalkeeper. It took one bounce, and landed at the foot of Amanda Pak. She drilled the shot but it was blocked over the line. The Miners couldn’t convert on the ensuing corner.
A minute later, a foul on Arizona gave UTEP a chance from a set piece. Hall ripped a shot but it was cleanly collected by the keeper. She had another such opportunity in the 13th minute, with almost the identical result. Hall generated one more shot on goal shortly thereafter, which was stopped by the netminder.
The Miners earned a pair of corners almost in succession in the 22nd minute but couldn’t find paydirt. A Tori Martyn header was saved on the first one while the Arizona defense cleared away the ball after a scramble in the box on the latter.
Arizona started to assert itself late in the period, but the Miners’ defense took care of business. UTEP won a ball off a corner and then deflected a shot which trickled into the hands of Sarah Dilling.
The Miners set the tone early in the second stanza, with Hall using some fancy dribbling to set up Babcock alone in the area. She took one touch and then laced the shot home into left upper 90’s country in the 39th minute.
The visitors countered three minutes later. A cross into the area found the foot of Heinzler, who put away the chance.
Dilling was credited with her first official save of the match in the 54th minute. She gobbled up an attempt from distance.
UTEP was back on the attack in the 59th minute, with Hall once again the mix of things. She fired a shot but it turned away by the keeper. Martyn sent a shot on target in the 61st minute only to have it be corralled by the netminder.
Arizona had a try in the waning minute of the match from a corner kick but Dilling came off her line to clear it away.
The Miners will conclude their exhibition spring slate when the play at New Mexico at 12 p.m. MT April 28.
UTEP- 14 shots, 8 shots on goal, 4 corner kicks & 4 fouls
Arizona- 7 shots, 2 shots on goal, 4 corner kicks & 10 fouls