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Aggies tie University of Denver

Women's soccer team has tied in last three games

staff writer

Published: Sunday, September 30, 2012

Updated: Sunday, September 30, 2012 21:09

The Utah State women’s soccer team ended their two-game WAC road trip Sunday afternoon with a 0-0 double-overtime tie at No. 18 Denver.

“It was a fantastic game. The girls played very well,” USU head coach Heather Cairns said. “We probably defended more than we attacked, but we did get some great scoring opportunities. We dug in defensively to get the tie. A tie against a top-25 team on the road who was the preseason number one pick to win the conference. We are really pleased with our performance today.”

It was the eighth time this season the Aggies played into overtime. It was also the third consecutive overtime game for USU as the last two matches have ended in scoreless draws.

It was also the third time USU has faced a ranked opponent this season, but the first time on the road. The Aggies played then No. 23 Washington to a 1-1 tie in logan and lost to No. 12 BYU 1-0 at home.

The Pioneers outshot the Aggies 24-10 with six of those shots on target, compared to just three for USU. The defense was able to hold their own against Denver with the help of goalkeeper Jeannie Woller, who got the nod over usual starter Ashlyn Mulford because of a red card suspension in the New Mexico State game.

“Jeanie stepped in and was great on free kicks and corner kicks,” Cairns said. “She was fantastic at shot stopping. She probably got to three or four shots that were really good by Denver. She had a lot of help from the defense. Taryn Rose and Natalie Norris in particular were fantastic. But really it was a whole team effort to keep them off the board.”

Denver came out firing in the first half with three shots and a corner kick in the first eight minutes.

USU survived the onslaught and showed signs of offensive life in the 11th minute when junior forward Mari Miyashiro hit the crossbar. Just a minute later, junior defender Jackie Tillotson sent her own shot flying over the goal.

The first half ended with Denver outshooting the Aggies 5-3 and 3-1 on corners, but the game remained goalless.

In the second half, the Pioneers brought the pressure by firing 12 shots. Woller kept the Pioneers off the scoreboard with three saves and was bailed out twice when Denver shots hit the woodwork first in the 47th minute and again in the 84th.

USU managed four shots in the second half, but none troubled Denver goalkeeper Lara Campbell.

“Each team had opportunities to win it and it just ended in a tie,” Cairns said. “It was just a great overall performance.”

In the first overtime period, the Aggies had two shots on goal, but both were saved by Campbell. Denver had three shots, but none of them troubled Woller’s goal.

The second overtime was much different as the Pioneers put the pressure on the USU defense once again with four shots and forced Woller to make two saves. Denver also had three corner kicks that resulted in nothing.

“I think both teams were tired toward the end,” Cairns said. “Two overtime games in a row with the travel involved — our girls played pretty darn gutsy to finish this one off. We got the hard-earned point.”

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