"It just takes good shot to score a goal, we outplayed them for the majority of the game but we didn't capitalize on our opportunities," stated SUU head coach Becky Hogan. "We did show that we can handle adversity. Before when we have gone down a goal our play has suffered, today we showed some mental toughness and kept competing to the end."
The Thunderbirds were on the attack from the start as Missy Lazcano set up the game’s first scoring opportunity by collecting a long pass with a header and sending the ball to Madison Wood who fired a shot that flew just above the crossbar. SUU kept up its offensive pressure throughout the half and would hold an 8-6 advantage in shots during the opening period.
The score remained even until the closing minutes of the half when NMSU broke through to notch a go ahead goal. The Aggies worked the ball up to the attacking third where Todd Layla sent a cross in front of the goal that was redirected into the back of the net by Katelyn Smith. That score would prove to be the lone goal of the match as NMSU outlasted the Thunderbirds for a 1-0 final.
Southern Utah remained the aggressor in the second period earning 11 shots to New Mexico State’s eight to outshoot its opponent by a total count of 19-14. Freshman midfielder Savannah Spere led SUU with four shots in the contest, including three on goal. Senior Stacey Brinkman also recorded four shot for the Thunderbirds, two of which were on frame.
"This spring our set pieces were like clockwork and resulted in most of our goals. Then entry ball on our corners were exceptional today, but on the receiving end we were a little sloppy. We will definitely work on those this week," explained Hogan. "This team is desparate for a win like a man in the desert would be thirsting for water and we are so close. We just need to get a little taste and I believe the floodgates will open."
SUU is now 0-4-0 on the year while the Aggies pick up their first win to move to 1-2-1. The T-Birds will return home to Cedar City next week as they prepare to host Utah Valley on Saturday, Sept. 8 at 1:00 p.m