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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

Soccer ends historic weekend with a loss

Tim Glass / Arizona Daily Wildcat

UA soccer hosts Stanford Oct. 24, 2010.  Stanford won 3-0.
Tim Glass
Tim Glass / Arizona Daily Wildcat UA soccer hosts Stanford Oct. 24, 2010. Stanford won 3-0.

After a loss, coaches and players often look for the silver lining.

For the Arizona Wildcats soccer team, the bright side of this weekend was the program’s first ever win against California, beating the Golden Bears 1-0 in overtime on Friday night before falling to No. 1 Stanford 3-0 on Sunday.

Freshman Shannon Heinzler played hero against Cal (7-4-5, 2-3-1 Pacific 10 Conference), taking a feed from senior Macke Mutz in the 99th minute, and sending a long strike that glanced off the hands of Cal’s goalkeeper and into the back of the net.

“”She was lucky,”” head coach Lisa Oyen said of Heinzler’s first career goal. “”Taking that shot was a risk, and it worked out for her, and us.””

Heinzler’s heroics wouldn’t have been possible if not for a strong effort from Arizona’s defense and junior goalkeeper Ashley Jett who recorded her second clean sheet of the season. Jett made a clutch save in the 89th minute on a Cal ball that nearly found the top shelf of the goal before she denied it.

A lot was made after the game on how Arizona played with a high level of energy for a full 90 minutes, something that Oyen and her staff have been harping for the whole year.

“”We’ve talked all season about having our best, most complete ninety minutes out there and this is definitely the most complete we’ve seen so far,”” Oyen said.

The Wildcats’ effort against Cal gave them a boost to set them up for a showdown with No. 1 Stanford on Sunday.

Down 1-0 in the second half, Arizona (5-9-2, 1-4) to force the issue, appearing more aggressive and putting pressure on Stanford’s back four.

“”In the first half, a lot of it was, ‘Oh Stanford’s the number one team in the country, how are we going to play? How are we going to match up?’ By the end of the first half we saw that we could play with them and create chances,”” Oyen said.

The Wildcats had their chance to equalize in the second half when Heinzler drew a foul inside the box to give freshman Ana Montoya a shot to tie the game on a penalty kick.

Montoya’s shot trickled wide left of the goal, and Stanford (15-0-2, 6-0 Pac-10) capitalized on the momentum swing to ice the game with two more quick goals.

“”It was definitely a tough loss, especially when you have the chance to tie it up with a PK in the second half,”” Oyen said. “”Missing that kind of changes the momentum a little bit, and it took us a while to get back into a rhythm after that.””

Despite the loss to the Cardinal, Sunday capped what Oyen called an overall positive weekend.

“”Cal was another team that had been doing well nationally and in our conference, so you get some confidence from beating a team like that. Moving forward, we feel like we have a shot against any team we play, whether it be the number one team in the country, or the number 300 team in the country.””

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