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Recap: Soccer’s two first half goals enough to steam Rice in conference-opening victory

Recap: Soccer’s two first half goals enough to steam Rice in conference-opening victory

Recap: Soccer’s two first half goals enough to steam Rice in conference-opening victory
March 07
21:59 2021

After winning the first three matches in a row, the soccer team extended its win streak to four and took its first Conference USA match of the season 2-1 over the Rice University Owls.

Going on the attack early, North Texas (4-0, C-USA 1-0) earned a corner kick and got two shots on goal in the match’s first five minutes. Senior midfielder Brooke Lampe netted their first goal minutes later at the 6:51 mark, scoring a header off a free kick assist by freshman defender Madi Starrett. She said the goal was an emotional one after losing her mother to breast cancer last month.

“Sometimes I do this thing where I get really zoned in and I just literally follow the ball, like, I just track the ball from start to finish,” Lampe said. “Sometimes you just get a good feeling something’s going to happen. Right after I scored, I hate to admit it, but I just broke down crying and I couldn’t even control it. A lot of that, I think, either it was for my mom or I knew she helped me with that one.”

Two first-half goals by North Texas proved to be too much for the Owls (4-1, C-USA 1-1) to overcome as they scored their first and only goal late in the match at the 81:01 mark.

“I thought we started off really strong and we came out fast,” Lampe said. “Getting a goal early was really good for us and then getting another one not too long afterwards. The second half wasn’t as strong as we wanted, but I definitely think we outplayed them in the first half.”

The Mean Green’s second and deciding goal came 23:54 into the first half as senior forward Berklee Peters put home a header of her own. The goal came off a well-placed corner kick by redshirt-freshman midfielder Taylor Tufts.

With both of North Texas’ goals coming on set pieces, Lampe said the team’s size made them tough to defend.

“Usually, the day before a game we go over set pieces,” Lampe said. “Luckily, we have a lot of size on our team so it’s kind of hard to mark everybody. Other teams, they have to pick and choose who they’re going to try and mark.”

After posting two shots on goal and zero corner kicks in the first half, Rice saw more success on the attack in the second half.

The Owls had all four of their corner kicks come in the second half and three of their five shots on goal. Their lone goal was scored on the last of those corners by senior defender Mijke Roelfsema.

“I think we recovered very well in the second half, because they came in with a different formation,” Peters said. “During the week, we prepared for if they changed their formation during the game, so I think that helped. If we didn’t go over it in practice, I think it would’ve been really hard for us, but we recovered well once they switched it in the second half.”

In allowing Rice’s late score, North Texas gave up its first goal of the young season. It had shut out its first three opponents by a combined margin of 9-0.

Up Next: The soccer team will return home for a March 12 matchup with Louisiana Tech University (8-3, 1-1 C-USA) in the Mean Green’s second game of C-USA play.

Featured Image: Sophomore Michelle Gonzalez steals the ball from an Oklahoma player on March 4, 2021. Image by Zachary Thomas

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John Fields

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