Soccer breaks month-long winless streak


The UTEP Soccer team won against Middle Tennessee, Oct. 16 after losing against Florida Atlantic Owls Oct. 7 and Rice University Oct. 13. Photo courtesy of UTEP Athletics.

Katrina Villarreal, Staff Reporter

UTEP soccer had a big comeback win at home against Middle Tennessee, Oct. 16, after facing two losses on the road. The Miners (4-9-3, 1-5-2 Conference USA) fell to the Florida Atlantic Owls Oct. 7 and Rice University Oct. 13.  

Florida Atlantic University 

In the loss against Florida Atlantic Oct. 7 (7-7-3, 3-4-1 C-USA), it was all Florida Atlantic with the help of senior midfielder/forward Thelma Hermannsdottir scoring a trio of goals in minutes 14, 53 and 87 that led the Owls to a 6-0 victory shut out. The Owls had the ball 60 percent of the game, which also included touching the ball 69 percent of the time.  

The Miners had freshman goalkeeper Alaina Gilbert make her college debut late in the game against the Owls.  

Rice University 

UTEP went against the leaders of Conference USA Oct. 13, Rice University (9-7, 7-0 C-USA). It was a rough game from the beginning with a power outage on part of the field where the teams played, along with a lightning delay before halftime.  

Graduate student forward Grace Collins scored two goals to lead Rice to a 2-0 victory against the Miners. Rice had a 12-8 advantage in shots over the Miners and a 3-2 lead in shots.  

UTEP was able to have eight shots during the game which included three in the last two minutes of the game. Graduate student forward/midfielder Sophia Lewis led the Miners with four shots in the game, including a shot in minute 88 that went over the net. 

Middle Tennessee 

The Miners were able to stay in contention for a spot in the C-USA Championship with an Oct. 16 win over Middle Tennessee (2-9-3, 0-5-2 C-USA). UTEP defeated Middle Tennessee 2-0.  

Middle Tennessee recorded nine total shots along with three coming on goal. Junior midfielder/forward Eleanor Gough had a team-high total of three shots and two on target.  

The Miners were able to record an early start with junior midfielder/defender Vanessa Cabello setting up freshman forward Mina Rodriguez for a goal in minute four of the game. Cabello also set Lewis up for her first career goal as a Miner. Senior goalkeeper Mariah Scott recorded three saves for her fifth shutout of the season.  

“A couple of games ago we got together and decided that we are going to look at this totally new and kind of have a renaissance of, ‘Hey, what’s important and how are we going to enjoy the last four no matter what happens?’” UTEP Head Coach Kathryn Balogun said in a press release after the game. “With that attitude, I think some of the pressure that we have put on ourselves sort of came off. You could see that we played with a little more freedom and a little bit more joy.” 

UTEP will continue its home run against North Texas at 1 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 23 at University Field.  

Katrina Villarreal is a staff reporter and may be reached at [email protected]