Women’s soccer rebounded from a week of on-the-road losses and claimed victory at both of the weekend’s home matches.
Last week, the Sugar Bears failed to score against Utah State University (0-1) and Utah Valley University (0-2).
This week, the Sugar Bears beat the Arkansas State Red Wolves 3-2 on Aug. 28.
The Red Wolves led Friday’s match 2-0 until the 33-minute mark, when junior forward Chele Naudin scored, assisted by freshman defensive Kristen Ricks. In the second half, sophomore forward Dayna Mounie put another point on the scoreboard.
The game tied and went into overtime, where Naudin netted a penalty shot against Red Wolf keeper freshman Kelsey Ponder and won the game.
The Sugar Bears defeated the University of Louisiana–Monroe Warhawks 1-0 on Aug. 30.
The Bears dominated possession throughout the game, but couldn’t turn that possession into points during the first half. Freshman middle and forward Ashley Smith jump-kicked the ball past Warhawk keeper sophomore Alexis Felippe to score in the 55th minute.
“My goal was to score as a forward, and I hadn’t been doing that,” Smith said. “Finally, I did that today.”
Smith said winning the matches provided a much-needed boost to team morale.
“Going 0-2 last week and now going 2-0 this week has built up our confidence, compared to last weekend,” Smith said. “We went on a big trip, so we hoped to go far and do well, but we didn’t do the best we could.”
In both matches, UCA made a majority of its game-changing plays after halftime.
Coach Jeremy Bishop said the Sugar Bears played difficult teams in Utah and that the losses on the road helped them learn what the team needed to do to win at home.
“We dropped both of the games last weekend in Utah,” Bishop said. “We needed to adjust after last weekend and we did. It made a big difference for us.”
The Sugar Bears will play the University of Arkansas–Little Rock Trojans on Sept. 2 and the University of Tulsa Hurricanes on Sept. 6, both on the road.