CMU can’t buy a goal vs. ‘Lopes
As the Colorado Mesa University women’s soccer team left Walker Field after Saturday night’s 2-0 loss to Grand Canyon, the emotions were mixed.
On one hand, there was frustration.
The Mavericks, who came into the game after a win against Dixie State on Thursday, allowed two goals in the final 36 minutes and couldn’t get the ball in the net despite taking 18 shots.
On the other hand, there was optimism about a game in which the Mavericks forced numerous steals, controlled the tempo and created plenty of shot opportunities.
“We played really good as a team. I just know a lot of us are frustrated right now, but we played amazing,” said senior midfielder Kelci Crispe, who had six shots, four on goal.
Early on, the Mavericks played aggressive defense, with forwards keeping Grand Canyon’s back line in check, and the pressure continuing to the back. That led to steals, and set Mesa up for scoring opportunities, including four shots on goal in the first half.
CMU scored in the seventh minute on a corner kick, which bounced off Grand Canyon’s Gabriella Zabala de Rojas. The goal was disallowed because of a hand ball.
The Mavericks continued the offensive pressure in the second half with 11 shots, seven on goal, although many of those were right at Grand Canyon goalie Catherine Lena, who made 11 saves.
“Statistically, we did dominate them in a lot of those offensive categories, we just couldn’t put it in the back of the net,” CMU coach Erin Sharpe said. “We always had three people in the box and one of these days it’s going to start bouncing our way where we’re going to put in maybe five of those.”
The only goals allowed by the Mavericks came in the second half.
In the 53rd minute, Grand Canyon’s Jessica Scarpati jumped higher than CMU’s defenders and got her head on a corner kick by Marina Nesic to take the lead.
In the 80th minute, Jessica Lincoln secured the win by playing a ball off a CMU defender and putting it past goalie Arielle Harris.
Sharpe was optimistic with the team starting Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference play Friday.
“We’re more organized defensively than what we were even on Thursday when we got the win,” she said, “so it was a good thing for us to build on going into conference plays.”
Alexis Skarda placed fourth to lead Colorado Mesa to a third-place finish in the 18th annual Joe Vigil Invitational in Alamosa.
The Mesa senior finished the race in 17 minutes, 35 seconds. She was 31 seconds behind Western State’s Lauren Kleppin.
Brooke Bosman and Kelsey Follett finished 24th and 25th.
Western State won the team title with 27 points. Adams State took second with 45 and Mesa was third with 82.
The Mesa men were sixth in its first race in the program’s history with 167 points. Adams State won with 27 points. Western State was second with 28.
Shane Nicsic finished 65th overall for the Mavericks in 29:14. Edgar Hernandez was 83rd in 31:01.
The Colorado Mesa men won two of the three doubles matches and defeated Nebraska-Omaha 5-4 in a nonconference dual in Pueblo.
Alex Barrios and Jonathan Casson won 9-7 at No. 2 doubles. Andres Hernandez, Casson and Forrest Kennel each won in singles.
The Mesa women lost two of the three doubles matches and fell to Metro State 5-4.
Kelleen Sera and Kaitlan Sera led the Mavericks, winning at No. 1 and 2 singles and No. 1 doubles. Kaylee Davis won at No. 3 singles.