A chilly morning blew through St. George Saturday morning as well as the University of Hawaii-Hilo’s women’s soccer team that swept up a 1-0 win against Dixie State University.
The loss dropped Dixie State to 4-4-2 on the season and 4-2-1 in the Pacific West Conference.
The match was in a scoreless stalemate until the Red Storm failed to block a penalty kick by the Vulcans in the second half and were unable to recover.
“I think we struggled to find the flow of the game in the first half,” head coach Kacey Bingham said. “I think we played better in the second half but still struggled to be dangerous in the final third of the field.”
More chances to score came for Dixie State, including a penalty kick in the 16th minute. Sophomore midfielder Kaisa Goodman took the kick toward the right side, but the Hawaii-Hilo keeper made a save to keep the match scoreless.
In the last 10 minutes of the first half, the Red Storm attempted to drive the ball down the field with long passes. They were rewarded with another penalty kick attempt in the last four seconds of the half that was halted again by the Vulcan goalkeeper.
A DSU fan said, “It’s not over till it’s over. Go get ’em Dixie!”
Dixie State outshot the Vulcans 10-5, but only a header from junior midfielder Ashley Wade came close to the net. Goodman pulled through three more shots, and junior forward Jennifer Mason and junior midfielder Aarika Andersen had two shots each.
If the first half didn’t have enough tension, the second half proved to be knocking the women on both teams right off their feet. Possession in Vulcan territory produced two more short goal attempts from the Red Storm.
With fifteen minutes left on the clock, Bingham could be heard shouting encouragingly at her players to keep playing harder.
“We have to be more creative and smarter when we are in crunch situations,” Bingham said. “Next game, I’m hoping we can do a better job executing in key moments.”
Sophomore goalkeeper Stacie Gubler, a sophomore nursing major from Las Vegas, made four solid saves in the game.
“All I have to say about the game is that we played well despite the outcome,” Gubler said. “I just had an unlucky foul in the box that cost us a penalty kick. We will be training hard this week to work out our kinks for the California games.”
The Red Storm hit the road to the Bay Area for their next match Saturday, Oct. 12 at Holy Names University. Kick off is at 2 p.m. in Oakland, Calif.