Courtesy: Spencer Farrin (Pullman, Wash.)
|Vandals can't finish at EWU|
CHENEY, Wash. – Sometimes the scoreboard doesn’t tell the full story. It certainly didn’t on Friday night in Idaho soccer’s 2-0 loss at Eastern Washington in which the Vandals controlled most of the game and simply missed their opportunities.
Idaho (2-7-0) controlled possession, played most of the game in the forward half and held a 22-9 overall shot advantage – 11-5 on target – but nothing went through for the Vandal women. On the flip side, EW (2-4-1) converted their two second-half counter attacks to prove the difference.
“I’m trying to understand how we didn’t win that game, but then I looked at the scoreboard and it reminds me why,” Idaho head coach Peter Showler said. “We’re not finishing our chances and other teams are, and it’s hurting us hard. At 22 shots, you expect a couple of goals, at least.”
Idaho put one shot off the cross bar and had several close-range chances that were blocked by defenders or saved by EWU keeper Nathalie Schwery, who finished the game with 11 saves.
“I can’t fault the effort and I can’t fault the commitment or the work rate,” Showler said. “I can’t fault anything except for us not finishing chances. It’s tough when those opportunities arise and we don’t finish them.
“Their keeper kept them in the game, but at the end of the day, we had 22 shots and we’ve got to score.”
After a scoreless first half in which the Vandals held a 10-6 shooting edge, EWU broke through with a counter and took a 1-0 lead at 55:32 with the score by Cassie Black. They struck again on another long ball from Haley Stading at 65:42.
“I’ll give credit where credit’s due,” Showler said. “Eastern Washington took their chances when they had them and that’s why they won today.”
Idaho pressed forward and had many chances in the box and in front of net, but Schwery pulled off three impressive saves and multiple chances went just wide or didn’t quite connect.
“We were good everywhere, except at putting the ball in the back of the old onion bag,” Showler said.
The team will try to rebound on Sunday in a rivalry match when Washington State, which is receiving votes in this week’s National Soccer Coaches Association of America national poll, comes to Guy Wicks Field for the Palouse border rivalry.
The Cougars took a 2-0 home win over Hawai`i at home on Friday. Sunday’s match kicks off at Noon (PT).