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Recap: Soccer eyes conference tourney after topping Texas-San Antonio on senior night

Recap: Soccer eyes conference tourney after topping Texas-San Antonio on senior night

Recap: Soccer eyes conference tourney after topping Texas-San Antonio on senior night
April 10
19:34 2021

Playing in its regular-season finale, the soccer team defeated Conference USA foe, the University of Texas-San Antonio, on Friday by a score of 3-0. 

With the win, North Texas (7-2-1, C-USA 4-1-1) clinched the No. 2-seed in the C-USA West division heading into the conference tournament. The top eight teams in C-USA, four from each division, qualify for the tournament.

After winning the 2019 C-USA tournament going in as a No. 2-seed, senior goalkeeper Kelsey Brann said the team’s past experience will help heading into the tournament. 

“Being the No. 2-seed doesn’t really deter my confidence in the team at all,” Brann said. “I think we can get it done just as easily as if we were the No. 1-seed.”

Competing in their final home match of the season, the Mean Green also celebrated senior night and honored their four seniors prior to the match — Brann, forward Berklee Peters and midfielders Brooke Lampe and Elle Marie DeFrain.

“I’m glad everyone showed up for all the seniors, especially Brooke Lampe,” Peters said. “We all wanted to play for her because her mom couldn’t be here, but she was here in spirit.”

In the early goings, North Texas and UTSA (3-7-1, 1-5 C-USA) exchanged a corner kick each with neither amounting to a shot. It was a tough night offensively for the Roadrunners as they did not attempt a single shot in the first half.

By contrast, the Mean Green attempted nine shots in the first half with six ending up on goal. The first goal of the night came with less than a minute remaining in the first half. A shot by sophomore midfielder Michelle Gonzalez was saved by the UTSA keeper, but redshirt-freshman midfielder Taylor Tufts put home the rebound as Gonzalez’s shot bounced right to her off the keeper’s hands.

“I was kind of in the right spot at the right time,” Tufts said. “I was kind of jogging up to the goal, but when I saw the defensive line got a little unorganized and started yelling at each other, I knew I needed to follow that shot […] I knew that was me.”

Following the late first-half goal, North Texas netted two more shots in the second half to seal the win. Sophomore midfielder Desiree Ramirez netted her first goal of the season nearly 15 minutes into the half, assisted by freshman midfielder Devyn Flannery. Almost 18 minutes later, junior forward Connor Barker scored her third goal of the season off an assist by Peters.

“I don’t want to walk away feeling like I didn’t do as much as I wanted to,” Peters said. “I was just trying to push through and see if I could at least get an assist or a goal. I’m glad that they kind of messed up back there so I could cross in. I was very surprised, but I’m glad I noticed it and got onto it early.”

Coming off the 3-0 win, Peters said North Texas is confident heading into the conference tournament.

“I feel really good going in [to the C-USA tournament], especially with how well we played this game,” Peters said. “We have a lot of momentum and fight to go into the first game. Hopefully, we can go all the way through to the NCAA [tournament] and win our first NCAA game.”

Up Next: Soccer will travel to Houston for the C-USA tournament on April 13-17 hosted by Rice University (10-2, C-USA 5-1).

Featured Image: Junior forward Connor Baker runs after the ball against Oklahoma state on March 14, 2021. Image by Zachary Thomas

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John Fields

John Fields

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