By Ronell Hugh
The Mountain West Conference Championship slipped away from the No. 16 BYU women”s soccer team as it fell to the No. 14 University of Utah in 1-0 overtime loss on Saturday, Nov. 1 at South Stadium.
“It comes down to us not being able to finish – we did all the things we were supposed to do,” said head coach Jennifer Rockwood.
With the loss, the Cougars head into the MWC Tournament ranked second behind the Utes.
The Cougars will meet Air Force in the first round of the tournament.
The loss to the Utes marks only the second time in history the Cougars have lost to Utah.
“We had opportunities, but still need someone to step up for this team and hit those goals that we need,” Rockwood said.
In the first half, BYU held possession of the ball and had five shots. Four shots were on goal, causing crucial saves by Ute goalie Ashley Mason.
The second half erupted as the Cougars came out looking for a goal to propel them past the Utes.
Sophomore Brooke Thulin hammered a shot from 18 yards out. The shot forced Ute goalie Mason to make a diving save.
Junior Krissa Campbell shot from 18 yards out after picking up a loose ball. Campbell”s shot hit the crossbar and bounced down and out.
BYU has athletes that can run with many NCAA teams, but lacks someone who can score, Rockwood said.
The Cougars held possession of the ball throughout the second half.
“We”re a great possession team,” Rockwood said.
The Cougars ended the second half with eight shots, six being on goal.
In overtime, BYU was unable to get a shot off.
The Utes picked up their 15th win of the season with a goal in the 94th minute.
The goal came as the Utes crossed the ball in from the right side of the field.
The Cougar defense withheld the Ute”s initial attack by heading the cross out of the goal area.
The ball was headed out and landed at the feet of Ute freshman Amanda Feigt. Feigt, from Sandy, controlled the ball and curled it into the back of the net over a mob of players including BYU goalie Ashley Smith.
The Cougars record at the end of regular season is 12-5-2 and a conference record of 4-2-0.
This season the Cougars have a record of 0-3-2 in overtime games.
BYU moves on to the MWC Tournament behind the Utes who move into ranked No. 1.
The No. 14 Utes picked up their first ever MWC Championship.
“They deserve to be ranked very high,” Rockwood said.
The Utes end their regular season with a 15-2-0 record and a 6-0-0 conference record.
The final game of the season also marked the last home game for seniors Aleisha Rose, Lydia Ojuka, Jennifer Fielding, Britney Holman, Aydree Soffe and Farrah Olmstead.
These players were honored and congratulated by head coach Rockwood, assistant coach Chris Watkins and Brian Jolley before the game.
The Cougars will play Air Force on Wednesday at 11:30 a.m. at Ute Field in Salt Lake City.