Soccer Sports

Soccer closes non-conference season looking for a win


After losing to UC Riverside, the Cougars bounced back against UTSA and will look to carry the momentum into their game against New Mexico State. | File photo/The Cougar

The Cougars women’s soccer team will return to the pitch this Friday to host the New Mexico State University Aggies, aiming to continue its hot start and finish the non-conference schedule on a strong note.

The Cougars (4-1-1) come into the weekend in good form after dominating the University of Texas at San Antonio in a 2-0 shutout.

Junior midfielder Vanessa Almaguer and sophomore forward Desiree Bowen both found the back of the net in the second half against the Roadrunners. Freshman Nicole Young made some stellar saves to keep the clean sheet after sophomore starting-keeper Rachel Estopare had an injury and was carted off.

Head coach Chris Pfau had high praise for Young after the game.

“For her to come into the middle of a game and play at the level she did, shows the talent in her ability, especially as a freshman seeing her first action,” Pfau said. “She was able to play at this level because every day she shows up to training and works extremely hard.”

Pfau and his staff weren’t the only ones to take notice of Young’s outstanding play. Her nine saves earned her the American Athletic Conference’s Goalkeeper of the Week award — the second time this year a Cougar had earned this accolade.

On the opposite side of the field, it has been a rough start for the Aggies, who enter Friday with a 2-8 record. The team is coming off of a 2-0 loss at home against Nevada and has a combined record of 1-6 on the road this season.

The meeting this Friday will mark the first time that the two teams have faced each other. First kick is scheduled for 7 p.m. at Carl Lewis Complex, but before the game, the team will honor the careers of its senior class, defenders Shayne Clewett and Courtney Dudley and midfielders Tiffani Echeverria and Megan Goh.

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