UTEP Soccer Falls at #8 Memphis, 3-0
The UTEP soccer team was upended at No. 8 Memphis, 3-0, Friday evening. The Miners (10-4-2, 4-2-1 C-USA) registered 10 shots, including four on goal, while also earning a quartet of corner kicks but could not put it all together. The Lady Tigers (14-0-1, 6-0-1 C-USA) enjoyed a 1-0 lead at the half thanks to a goal from Christabel Oduro (21:44) before tacking on a pair strikes in the second stanza (Rasheeda Ansari, 57:51 & Lizzy Simonin, 75:43).
UTEP was without the services of starters Tess Hall and Jessie Pettit, who missed the match due to injuries. Freshman GK Sarah Dilling was credited with a trio of saves.
The Orange and Blue used good ball movement in the opening stages of the contest to set up reigning C-USA Offensive Player of the Week Brittany Kindzierski, but her shot was gobbled up by U of M netminder Elise Kuhar-Pitters. The save was one of four in the match for her.
Dilling was called upon for the first time a few minutes later, and she delivered with a save on an attempt by Oduro at 10:38. UTEP went back on the offensive in the 17th minute by earning a corner kick, but it could not find a way to convert on the service from freshman Tayler O’Hayre.
Tori Martyn ripped a shot which was blocked over the endline at 19:53 to give the Miners another corner, but they could not find pay dirt. The Lady Tigers then mounted a counter attack, which culminated with Oduro managing to best Dilling on a shot from five yards out after a cross by Kylie Davis.
The visiting side settled down nicely after the tally, matching the U of M in shots (three) over the final 24 minutes of the stanza. Azia Nicholson was denied by Kuhar-Pitters at 33:56 while attempts from Katie Dorman (32:46) and Kindzierski (44:27) were off target.
UTEP asserted itself in the early stages of the second stanza, as it upped its intensity in search of the equalizer. A nice cross found the head of freshman Amanda Pak, but her shot was off the mark at 46:07. Quality play by the back line forced the U of M to go offside twice over the next five minutes.
The Miners were then back on the attack, earning another corner kick. They could not find a way to put it away, however. The Lady Tigers mounted a counter attack, which resulted in their second strike of the tilt. A ball was headed down to the foot of Ansari, who coerced it past Dilling.
The Orange and Blue continued to fight, in an attempt to get things going. Good passing led to some chances, but they did not pay off. A shot by Kindzierski was turned away by Kuhar-Pitters at 65:55 while O’Hayre was denied at 71:31.
The Lady Tigers managed to extend their advantage out to 3-0 as result of a Simonin strike with 15 minutes to play.
UTEP will look to get back on track when it plays at UAB at 12 p.m. MT Sunday.