Women’s soccer falls to No. 22 Utah

The WSU soccer team lost their fifth conference match this weekend, falling to No. 22 Utah 0-1 in Salt Lake City.

The Cougars were outshot by the Utes, taking only 11 to Utah’s 19. WSU is third in the Pac-12 for overall shots with 225 this season, preceded only by Colorado and California.

Utah got off to a quick start, taking their first shot on goal in the fifth minute of play. The Cougars quickly responded with a shot of their own three minutes later, taken by freshman forward Morgan Weaver, but the Utah goalkeeper shut down the attempt.

Senior forward Kaitlyn Johnson consistently fed the ball to Weaver and senior midfielder Kailiana Johnson, assisting in dual shots on goal in the first half. The Cougars were leading in shots 3-1 by half-time, but neither team had been able to score.

Sophomore forward Alysha Overland received a yellow card immediately after the kick-off of the second half after fouling a Utah defender in the box.

Overland’s foul was shortly followed by chaos in the box when Utah took multiple consecutive shots on goal, but redshirt sophomore goalkeeper Ella Dederick, along with Cougar defenders, prevented any shots from going in.

A Utah player took down Dederick in the 67th minute, stopping game play with concerns of injury; however she recovered and continued to defend the goal. Dederick ultimately tallied six saves during the game.

Overtime seemed imminent, as the teams remained 0-0 with only a few minutes left of regulation. In the 85th minute Utah sophomore forward/defender Hailey Skolmoski broke through the WSU defense and sent the ball to the left of Dederick, scoring for the Utes.

Skolmoski led in shots for the game, taking four overall. Johnson led the Cougars with three and was followed by Weaver who had two on goal.

The Cougars were unable to recover in the five final minutes, and the Utes recorded a 1-0 victory in Pullman. The loss dropped the Cougars to (1-5-0) in the conference and (6-7-1) overall.

WSU will begin preparation for two matches in California this coming week, starting with USC on Thursday, followed by UCLA on Sunday.