By Lainie Guiddy for MSNsportsnet.com
November 14, 2004
AUSTIN, Texas -In a match initially delayed due to inclement weather and postponed once for lightning, the West Virginia University women’s soccer team fell, 2-1, to the University of Texas on Sunday afternoon at Mike A. Myers Stadium.
West Virginia (15-6-0) took an early 1-0 lead when a 20-yard shot from senior defender Ashley Weimer deflected off a Texas (14-6-2) defender squarely in front of the goal mouth. A perfectly-placed Cathy Abel walked in her first goal of the season at the 3:17 mark.
Texas had a great chance to even up the score when a shot from Amy Burlingham slipped through the hands of Mountaineer goalkeeper Lana Bannerman. However, the put-back from a charging Caitlin Kennedy soared over the net.
Senior forward Laura Kane almost gave WVU a two goal lead when a great shot from the left corner of the 18 forced Texas goalkeeper Alex Gagarin to make a bending save to her left.
Kelsey Carpenter evened the score at 1-1 with 5:30 to play in the first half when connecting passes from teammates Ashley Foster and Nicole Breger set her up with a one-versus-one situation against Bannerman. An aggressive Bannerman came off her line to take away the angle, but Carpenter put a shot to far bottom corner to get the Longhorns on the board.
Shots were a dead even 7-7 at the half, with the Mountaineers forcing Gagarin to make three saves while Bannerman made two.
Nine minutes into the second half, both teams were forced inside due to lightning. Immediately off the restart at 2:50 p.m., Ashley Banks sent a long throw into in the box and found herself in the perfect spot to pick up the garbage coming out of the box. Banks rifled a shot high, nearly nailing the go-ahead score.
West Virginia’s best chance of the second half came when Rachael Minnich found herself on the six yard line with only the Texas keeper preventing a score. A great opportunity was missed when Minnich’s shot was deflected high of the net by Gagarin.
A through ball off a slide tackle from Carrie Schmidt set up Kelly Wilson’s 16th score of the season and gave Texas a 2-1 advantage with 15 minutes to play.
With two seconds ticking off the clock, Kane rifled a shot from 35 yards out. Kane’s shot hit off the post, but junior Marisa Kanela picked up the deflection and put the ball in the back of the net, giving the Mountaineers what appeared to be the game-tying score. However, the referees waved off the goal, saying time expired; advancing Texas to their first-ever Sweet 16.
“Today we played together as a team,” said head coach Nikki Izzo-Brown. “We moved the ball with great passing and defended well. The only time Texas got dangerous on us was when we made a mistake. Unfortunately, they capitalized on our mistakes.
“Overall, our girls gave all they had,” Izzo-Brown continued. “I’m proud of the way they played today. I’m proud of these girls, proud of my seniors and proud to be the coach of this team.”
Today’s loss ends the Mountaineers’ season. West Virginia totaled 15 wins on the year, earned a first-team (Laura Kane) and three second team (Ashley Banks, Marisa Kanela and Ashley Weimer) all-conference selections. Additionally, Banks was the BIG EAST co-rookie of the year.
The Mountaineers finish the season with 51 goals, two shy of tying the school record, 44 assists, also two shy of the record, and 146 points.
West Virginia 1 , Texas 2
Scoring Summary: WVU - Abel (Weimer)3:17; UT - Carpenter (Foster, Breger) 39:32; UT - Wilson (Schmit, Breger) 74:46
Shots: WVU - 19; UT - 12
Corners: WVU -3; UT - 7
Fouls: WVU - 13; UT - 11
Goalkeeping: WVU - Lana Bannerman 2 GA, 3 saves, 90:00 minutes; UT - Alex Gagarin 1 GA, 8 saves, 90:00 minutes