The UCA women’s soccer team beat the Sam Houston State University Bearkats 4-1 in the first game of the Southland Conference Sept. 16 at the Bill Stephens Soccer Complex.
Associate head coach Derek Nichols said the Bears (6-3-0) have not beat the Bearkats (0-9-0) in eight seasons.
“That was a team that last year beat us in the conference tournament, and we actually hadn’t beaten them in eight seasons,” Nichols said. “They typically make the top of the conference year in and year out, so it was a big, big win for us.”
Nichols said the team had watched film on the Bearkats’ games, so they knew what to expect going into the game.
Sophomore defender Kristen Ricks said after this win, she was confident going into the Southland Conference.
“I think we have a really good chance of winning, because this team was actually the runner-up last year and we beat them by three goals this time, so I do think we have a really good chance of getting far,” Ricks said. “It really shows how we’re progressing.”
The Bears made a total of 23 shots during the game; 12 were shots on goal (SOG). The Bearkats made a total of 11 shots and 6 SOG. With 43 minutes left in the first half, Bearkat senior forward Jordan Jarzombek made an attempt at the goal.
At this point, the game had been interrupted twice by a puppy who had escaped his leash and run out to the field. Both times, the ref halted the game until the puppy was caught.
Sophomore forward Camille Bassett scored the first of two points 10 minutes into the game. In other games this season, Bassett has made at most five attempts on the goal; she also made more goals in this game than any other this season.
Sophomore midfielder and forward Ashley Smith scored the second goal for the Bears with 26 minutes left in the first half. Junior forward Dayna Mounie assisted.
At four minutes left in the first half, the Bearkats made their first and only goal of the game. The ball was momentarily stopped by junior goalkeeper Anna Hughes before falling into the goal above her fingers. Mounie made three attempts for the goal in the first 15 minutes of the second half. Her last attempt, at 33 minutes, went into the goal but was determined offsides and wasn’t counted.
At 32 minutes left in the second half, Bassett made her second of two goals.
Ricks made an attempt at the goal at 26 minutes; the ball was blocked by the goalkeeper. In the last 20 minutes of the second half, the Bearkats made several attempts at the goal, but none were successful.
Freshman midfielder Jordan Slim scored at six minutes left in the game. Junior midfielder Avery Taylor assisted.
Nichols said the game went well overall, despite some hiccups.
“Once we finally got our foot on the ball we were able to create some chances,” Nichols said. “Should have probably had three, four, five [goals]early in the game, but we got two, and then they kind of got one goal that was kind of one of those shots from a distance, the keeper mishandled it just a little bit.” In the second half, we came out, did what we needed to do and we put them away.”
Ricks said the Bears’ defense did very well at keeping the ball out of the goal, and that the one goal the Bearkats scored was more of a fluke than anything.
“I think the ref wasn’t making very good calls,” Ricks said. “He called it and it just went over our goalie’s hands, not much else you can do. That was the only chance they pretty much had.”
photo by Shiori Soya