Mean Green soccer falls to No. 25 Arkansas on road

Mean Green soccer falls to No. 25 Arkansas on road

September 11
22:10 2016

Against perhaps their toughest opponent yet, North Texas soccer took on No. 25 University of Arkansas, and came up short 1-0.

The Razorbacks (6-1-0) dictated possession against the Mean Green (5-2-1), putting up numerous shots on sophomore goalkeeper Brooke Bradley. Bradley responded by having one of the best games of her young career.

“She stepped up,” assistant coach Daniel Dobson said. “Her confidence has gotten a lot better. We know that if the defense does happen to give up a shot, she’s going to be back there to make the big save for us.”

Bradley made ten saves, some of them at full extension, and came off of her line countless times to punch or catch the ball and deter the Razorbacks scoring chances. However, one goal was allowed on a shot from about eight yards out from an Arkansas set piece.

“I really focused in and tried to concentrate,” Bradley said. “I just played my game.”

Despite only taking three shots, the Mean Green had dangerous scoring opportunities of their own.

Late in the first half, and for stretches in the second half, the ball remained in the North Texas end of the field. Senior forward Rachel Holden was keyed on by the opposing defense, as the reigning C-USA co-offensive player of the year was held to zero shots in 62 minutes played.

“We have to do a better job of getting the ball in our attacking end,” Dobson said. “Arkansas [did] a good job defensively of swarming us and putting a lot of pressure. We have to do a better job of calming down, staying composed, and getting the ball in our attacking third.

Despite giving up 23 shots, North Texas’ back line stayed strong, only allowing one goal and blocking or deflecting many of the Razorbacks’ shots.

One of the best teams in the SEC in throw-ins and set pieces, Arkansas challenged the Mean Green defense frequently with nine corners and a fair amount free kicks. The Mean Green bent but did not break for the majority of the game.

“That’s something that we’ve always been strong at defensively,” senior midfielder Anna Flobeck said. “We’re also strong at [set pieces] offensively, so it was a little disappointing that we couldn’t put any away, but that’s something that we’ve worked on a lot.”

North Texas had several chances throughout the match to grab an equalizer, but was unable to find the back of the net. Even with the loss, the team is adamant there is something they can take away.

“Every game that we lose is a learning lesson for us,” Bradley said. “There are always things that we can do better, and things that we can change to get the result that we want.”

Next up: The Mean Green travels to take on the University of Texas at 7:00 p.m. on Friday in Austin.

About Author

Matthew Brune

Matthew Brune

Matthew Brune is the Senior Sports Writer for the North Texas Daily, covering football and men's basketball.

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