UC Davis entered Sunday’s contest brimming with confidence from a 2-0 road win over University of San Francisco.
The Aggies were unable to repeat the performance against Seattle University, however, and UC Davis was handed a 1-0 shutout loss. The Aggie offense exploded out of the gate, putting plenty of pressure on Redhawk goalkeeper Madison Goverde. In the fifth minute, senior Lisa Kemp fired a shot on goal that Goverde managed to block. Eleven seconds later freshman Lexi Poppoff placed another effort on frame, but Goverde was up to the challenge yet again.
Following the two missed attempts, the Aggies cooled down considerably. UC Davis posted just two shots in the final 40 minutes of the first half.
Meanwhile, the Redhawks were able to capitalize when Kristi Prati put the ball in the net to give Seattle University the lead.
Coach MaryClaire Robinson believes the Aggies struggled to finish the first-half strong due to a lack of focus.
“We need to work on staying more focused and disciplined, more relentless,” Robinson said.
The Aggies picked up the pace in the second half, out-shooting the Redhawks 7-1 but UC Davis was unable to find the back of the goal and the Aggies finished the game scoreless. Although UC Davis was unable to find the net, Robinson acknowledged the chances that the Aggie offense managed to create.
“We had fantastic opportunities at goal,” she said. “We just weren’t able to finish them.” Despite the loss, the Aggies walked away from this game with plenty of positives. “We played 60, maybe 70 minutes of great soccer,” Robinson said, “Two thirds of the game I was pleased with. It’s that last third where we got sloppy and undisciplined – that’s what we need to work on.” The Aggies are still working on putting all of the pieces together but so far they have had three solid games. Last year’s season was plagued by one-goal losses but this year’s squad is determined to turn that around. Robinson said the team is working hard on improving both their mental and physical fitness so they can play competitively for the full 90 minutes.
While this loss was a setback Robinson is confident that they can learn from it and grow stronger as a team.
“We’re in a good place,” she said. “We did very well early on and we all just kind of breathed a little too much. We’re going to move forward and come out with a renewed energy and focus.”
KIM CARR can be reached at email@example.com.