Pena goal not enough in 5-1 road loss
Lady Lions play host to OKC on Saturday
Defensive leaks allow easy goals by UHV
VICTORIA, Texas -- Senior forward Natalie Pena (Dallas, Tx / Tulsa Union HS) scored off of a free kick in the second half but it couldn’t prevent Southwestern Assemblies of God University from fall to the University of Houston at Victoria, 5-1.
The 5-foot-5 Pena (PAIN-ya) deflected a free kick into the net with assists from Ashley Nop (Stockton, Ca / Lincoln HS) and Kaylie Cox (Midlothian, Tx / Midlothian HS).
Cox, who has one of the strongest legs on the team, put the ball in play with a free kick.
SAGU, now 1-6 on the season, managed just seven shots, though five of them were on goal.
UHV, who evened their record at 4-4, controlled the ball and the pace of the game. The NAIA team ended the match with 23 shots, 11 of them on goal.
“Their speed up front really took its toll,” said SAGU Head Coach Mandy Fortner. “Our defense wasn’t able to keep up with them. They made us seem slow and unorganized in comparison.”
The Lady Jaguars scored their first goal on a crossing pass that was headed into the back of the net by Caroline Carvajal in the 19th minute.
The game stayed tight until late in the half. Katia Trevino scored the first of her back-to-back goals, each coming on assists from Megan Huerta. The second, in the 54th minute, put SAGU in a 3-0 hole.
Both goals came when Trevino got past the defense and beat the Lions goalie one-on-one.
They added two more scores, one in the 86th minute, with similar defensive breakdowns.
Pena performed well at forward and in the midfield area, according to Coach Fortner, as did freshman goalie Kathleen Espinosa (Corpus Christi, Tx / Richard King HS). She was practically defenseless on the goals she allowed.
Amber Belisle (Roseville, Cal / Whitney HS), a senior, and Madi Thornley (Flower Mound, Tx / Marcus HS) each booted two shots.
The Lady Lions must bounce back quickly. They return to the pitch on Saturday at 1:00pm in their Sooner Athletic Conference opener against Oklahoma City University (4-3).
The OKCU Stars are ranked nationally despite their 4-3 record. All three of their setbacks have been by the narrowest of margins. They have scored 14 goals and surrendered 10.
The Pride has dropped four in a row and has been outscored 19-5 in seven games.
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