Author: Thomas Lagrone
The UAB Blazers Women’s Soccer team (4-8-2) faced off against a conference rival in North Texas (7-4-3) on Friday night. The game was one sided in favor of North Texas in the first half, but a valiant second half comeback by the Blazers earned them the win.
A swift goal by North Texas’s Jenna Sheely nine minutes in started the game with a bang. Sheely hit an incredible header that peered just under the crossbar and found its way to the back of the net.
North Texas continued to apply relentless pressure with their attack for a majority of the first half, but UAB’s defense remained stout and denied any further goals.
UAB’s Audria Wood and Asha Zuniga were two vital players on the defense that limited the shots on goal for the Mean Green and kept the game within one score. During the final 15 minutes of the first half, UAB started to put some passes together and fired a couple of shots on target that gave them much needed momentum heading into halftime.
UAB looked like a completely different team than they were in the first half.
“I really felt like we switched to our gameplan in the second half with how we want to play,” said head coach Erica Demers.
The Blazers pushed the ball downfield and put the North Texas defense into dangerous situations. UAB freshman forward Laura Zemberyova had a great shot 54 minutes in that went inches wide of the post. This was a major turning point in the game, as the UAB attack continued to find opportunities for the rest of the game.
Lexxe Lipsey received a pass from Zemberyova 67 minutes inand was able to place the ball into the top corner, which gave the Blazers with their first goal of the game and tied the score at 1-1.
After another Blazer shot missed the mark, UAB’s Morgan Halliwill received a cross from Zemberyova and finished it in the bottom corner to put the Blazers ahead 2-1 with only 10 minutes left to play. Despite a few late chances from the North Texas attack, UAB was able to remain strong on defense and take the victory over their rival.
With the win, the Blazers move to second place in the C-USA West Division, with a 3-3 conference record.
The next matchup for UAB is on Sunday evening at Middle Tennessee State, who are 7-5-1 and have three wins within the conference.