Women's soccer opens season 2-0

Women's soccer opens season 2-0

 Lamar University scored goals in the 20th and 83rd minute of the game, but only needed the first goal to defeat University of Houston, 2-0, on Aug. 19 at the LU Soccer Complex. The victory was Lamar’s second-straight shutout to start 2018, which is the second consecutive season they have began 2-0.

“This was a huge win for us,” said head coach Steve Holman. “Houston is a good team, and they’re really good in the second half. I thought our defense was solid tonight — we bent but didn’t break. It was great to get a shutout.”

Both teams had attempts early in the game to take leads on penalty kicks. Houston’s goalkeeper was placed in the spotlight first, stonewalling a kick from Kelso Peskin, and Lamar’s Jocelyn Hanrath returned the favor against Houston moments later. The Cardinals finally snagged the lead when Peskin received a pass from sophomore Madison Ledet and headed it from the left side of the net. The goal gave LU a 1-0 lead, which would stand for more than 62 minutes.

Although Big Red held the advantage for the remainder of the first half, and the all the second, the defense was tested. UH took an 8-6 advantage in shots and a 5-1 advantage in corner kicks into the locker room. Despite their small lead in shots attempted, the Cougars were turned away time and again by a stingy LU defense. If shots got by defenders, which was rare, Hanrath stepped up to fill the gap. She recorded seven saves in her second shutout in an LU uniform.

“Macie McFarland and Sophia Manibo blocked some shots for us during the middle part of the game, which was huge,” said Holman. “In addition to that, Jocelyn (Hanrath) comes up huge in a penalty kick situation. It was fantastic to see Kelso (Peskin) rebound from missing on a penalty kick to score on a header from Ledet later in the game.”

The Cardinals put the game on ice, or rather, Houston put itself on ice when the Cougars’ Emma Clarke was trying to gain possession of the ball and scored an own goal with less than eight minutes remaining. Lamar will now take their perfect 2-0 mark on the road as they travel to the state of Oklahoma for two games.

LU will play Oklahoma State (1-0) in Stillwater on Friday, Aug. 24, at 7 p.m. The Cards. The Cards will then travel to Tulsa on Sunday, Aug. 26 to face former Southland member Oral Roberts (2-0) at 1 p.m.

“When you have a young team like ours, you experience a lot of firsts, especially with freshmen,” said Holeman. “This weekend they got experience in their first collegiate games, and now they experience playing on the road in hostile environments. Oklahoma State won the Big 12 title last season, and expected to win it again this season. Both OSU and Oral Roberts will be tough matchups.”