Utah Tech women’s soccer team remains undefeated in the last nine games

Indie Winterton a freshman general studies major from Pleasant Grove, drives the ball up the field against Sam Houston University on Oct. 7 Annie Sorensen | Sun News Daily

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On Oct. 7, without fail, the Utah Tech University women’s soccer team continues its winning streak after another win against Sam Houston State University.

The Trailblazers finished out the game with a 1-0 win against the SHSU Bearkats.

Head coach Molly Rouse said the team knew that the upcoming games are going to be the hardest games they will encounter in the conference this year. There are things the team is focusing on to prepare for these bigger conference games.

“We are playing some teams that all have a bit of a hot streak, teams that are at the top of the table in the conference, so we focused a lot on our transition moments,” Rouse said. “Those tend to be the ones that end up deciding games, and the team has responded really well.”

Some of these focuses include transition to attack, transitions to defend, passes out of pressure, and ultimately how to make it hard for other teams to compete.

Utah Tech starting keeper, Kayla Thompson, a senior exercise science major from Spanish Fork, controlled the back line and protected the goal leaving the Bearkats with a scoreless game.

“It was important that we connected our second pass, which is something we focused a lot on this past week,” Thompson said.

As a goalie, Thompson makes sure she stays focused on the game as it is a huge factor in her performance.

“I don’t know how, I just stay dialed into the game, I don’t pay attention to anything on the sidelines, and just focus on the game,” Thompson said.

Utah Tech forward, Brynlee Roberts, a junior exercise science major from Layton, capitalized on a scoring opportunity in the early second half of the game and achieved the only goal scored in the game. Roberts said one of her main goals was to attack the goal line and be confident in the attack.

Roberts juked the defender and laid a powerful shot on Sam Houston’s keeper, Tatum Krueger.

“The goal was just to attack the widths and get the ball to the widths to have better-shot opportunities,” Roberts said.

Rouse said the team has been focusing also on being competitive and brave in the final third, which will allow the team more opportunities to score by getting to the end line and making something happen when they get there.

Rouse said: “We saw some good moments in the first half where people got to the end line, we were in the right places, but did not make a final execution on it. So, in the second half, we saw people being more courageous in those spaces, creating better opportunities and finalizing the shot.”

Lauren Buxton, a senior accounting major from Scottsdale, Arizona, maintained control and possession in the midfield with two shots on goal. Buxton said some of the teams’ goals going into the game were putting up a good attack on the ball in every instance and keeping possession which was a significant factor in the win.

Buxton said: “A big part of us being successful was winning balls out of the air and winning those 50-50s. It is game-changing if you win those or not, so getting big off the ball with goal kicks and corners was really big for us.”

After this win, the team has a standing record of 8-2-1 in the season overall and stands 4-0-1 in the Western Athletics Conference rankings. The team has a one-day turnaround and will compete against New Mexico State University at the Greater Zion Stadium Oct. 9.