DALLAS – The UTSA soccer team (5-6-2, 0-3-1 AAC) fell behind the SMU Mustangs (6-3-1, 2-1-1 AAC) early in Thursday’s first half at Washburne Soccer Stadium and wasn’t able to overcome the 1-0 deficit, despite an aggressive and gritty second-half performance.
UTSA’s smothering defensive pressure kept the Mustangs off balance early, but SMU made the most of a long free kick by Leah Chancey, with defender Peyton Annen heading a goal past goalkeeper Jasmine Kessler as she came out to clear in the 15th minute.
UTSA came rushing into the attack after the half, creating chances immediately with a trio of shots from Sophie Morrin on a free kick, followed in rapid succession with attacks from Sabrina Hillyer and Sarina Russ in the first three minutes of the half. Maci Geltmeier fired off another strike into the upper right corner that required a diving Samantha Estrada save in the 59th minute. Deja Sandoval created one final solid opportunity in the 86th minute. While the Roadrunners battled for the tying goal to the final tick on the clock, SMU fended off the barrage to preserve the 1-0 win.
It was a physical, aggressive and chippy night in Dallas, as the contest produced 26 combined fouls and eight total yellow cards - and one red card.
In goal, Kessler produced two saves in three targets, while offensively Sasjah Dade led the Roadrunners with two first-half shots out of UTSA’s eight attempts on the night.
SMU: Peyton Annen (15’)
Quoting Coach Derek Pittman
"Very Proud of our team’s toughness and competitiveness in the face of adversity tonight. Against a quality SMU team and several other factors, our players showed their true character playing for a full 90 minutes. We continue to frustrate teams defensively and create enough chances to score goals. We have to stay the course and believe in ourselves. The goals will come as long as we continue putting in performances like this one tonight."
No contest for UTSA on Sunday for the third single-game week in a row for the Roadrunners. Next week, UTSA heads out for one of the longest geographical treks in conference play. UTSA will head to Birmingham to face UAB on Thursday night, then turn north for a Temple matchup on Sunday.