BYU women’s soccer: Utes slip past Cougars on late penalty kick

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A year after beating Utah on a penalty kick 1-0, the tables were turned as the BYU women’s soccer team found itself on the losing side. Holding Utah scoreless for most of the game, Katie Taylor netted one for the Utes in the 84th minute on a penalty kick, putting them ahead for good.

(Photo by BYU Photo/Marcos Escalona)
(BYU Photo/Marcos Escalona)

BYU started off strong with a 10-3 shot advantage in the first half. Ashley Hatch led the attack for the Cougars and finished the night with six shots. Elena Medeiros also contributed to the Cougars’ shot opportunities, ending with three shots and one on frame.

“Our first half we did a fantastic job of creating opportunities and playing really well,” BYU coach Jennifer Rockwood said. “But we need to be more physical, battle harder and find more ways to win.”

The Utes certainly battled back the second half, outshooting the Cougars 8-3. BYU goalkeeper Katherine Synder did an excellent job in the net, thwarting several of Utah’s golden opportunities inside the six-yard box. BYU also saw a strong performance in the goal box from Hannah Clark, who blocked a header off a corner kick in the 75th minute and deflected a free kick minutes later.

In the 84th minute, the Utes slotted the ball to the edge of the box for Utah’s Ali Allen. Clark got to the ball and kicked it out but rammed into Allen in the process. Allen was awarded the foul, giving Utah a penalty kick. Taylor hit an unstoppable shot in the right upper ninety of the net.

BYU came up empty handed in the final few minutes of the game, leaving the Cougars scoreless in their past two games.

“We had plenty of opportunities to score in the first half, and it shouldn’t have had to come down to that,” Rockwood said of Utah’s late penalty kick and her team’s missed chances.

The Cougars look to bounce back at their home field next week, Thursday, Sept. 11, against LSU. The game is at 6 p.m.

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