Sept. 10, 2017
Denver 1-2 Gonzaga (Halvorson 58’, Jencks 59’, Conners 77’)
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WSOC v Gonaga (10 SEP 17 - Highlights
DENVER – The University of Denver women’s soccer team dropped a 2-1 result to Gonzaga as the two teams played a majority of the second half 10 a side on Sunday afternoon at the University of Denver Soccer Stadium.
Sophomore goalkeeper Brittany Wilson (Littleton, Colo.) was sent off for the denial of an obvious goal scoring opportunity in the 53rd minute, a little less than five minutes before Gonzaga defender Ariana Pumpelly was given her marching orders in the 58th minute for fouling as the last defender of an obvious goal scoring opportunity.
“An unfortunate decision went against us today, but I give credit to our players for fighting through that,” head coach Jeff Hooker said. “Anytime you lose your goalkeeper, especially in the manner we did today, it’s going to make things difficult. I thought for the most part today we played very disciplined, they just broke us down on the second goal, and credit Gonzaga, they took advantage and scored.
“I told the four backs it’s the best I’ve seen them play in a half of soccer, and maybe the best 45 minutes I’ve seen from a DU team in a long time. We just ended up losing a little bit of that and broke down in the second half.”
Denver took five of the six corners and took four of the six shots in the first half as the Pioneers put the pressure on the visitors before the teams went to the locker room.
The Zags countered off a Denver free kick in the 53rd minute to setup the play in the box that had Wilson sent off. Gonzaga’s Madeline Gotta played a dangerous cross from the left just outside Wilson’s six yard box. The sophomore keeper won the ball in the air, controlled the ball, absorbed contact from outside back Mary DeWalt (West Bend, Wisc.), and didn’t lose control of the ball until the Zags’ Sophia Viviano knocked it out of her hands with her upper body on Wilson’s way back down. After the ball came out, Wilson held and climbed over Viviano, causing referee Chris Greer to point to the spot and send the sophomore off for denial.
In her first collegiate minutes, freshman Ali Tobey (Colorado Springs, Colo.) came on for the dismissed Wilson and had to face a penalty kick right away. Tobey guessed right and the penalty rattled off the post to keep things scoreless at the University of Denver Soccer Stadium.
In the 58th minute, senior Jessie Dancy (Park City, Utah) got free down the left and was taken down by Pumpelly who was shown red sending both teams to 10 players for the last 32:40. Freshman attacking midfielder Meg Halvorson (Englewood, Colo.) bent her free kick inside the right post for her second goal of the season to give Denver the 1-0 lead right on the 58 minute mark.
The match opened up 10v10, and India Jencks chested in a deflected Viviano cross to equalize for the visitors in the 59th. The goal was Jencks’ fifth of the season.
Gonzaga found its winner in the 77th minute when Maggie Conners got by her defender and curled her shot around the outstretched arms of Tobey and into the side netting.
UP NEXT: DU will close out its 2017 Colorado Cup next Saturday (9/16 – 7 p.m. MT), when the Pioneers host nationally ranked Colorado at the University of Denver Soccer Stadium. Denver would need to win by four goals, or a high-scoring three-goal win to take home the Colorado Cup for the first time since 2013. Otherwise, Northern Colorado will win the Colorado Cup for the first time in the seventh year of the tournament.
SINGLE GAME TICKETS: Single-game tickets for the remaining home matches can be purchased online by clicking here. For all Denver Athletics ticket inquires, call 303-871-GOAL (4625), or visit DenverPioneers.com.
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