Nov. 12, 2010
PORTLAND, Ore. -- The Sooner soccer team’s season ended in the first round of the NCAA Portland Regional on Friday in a 4-0 loss to Washington at Merlo Field.
The Sooners came out firing as sophomore Caitlin Mooney’s shot just 20 seconds into the game was narrowly saved by UW’s Jorde LaFontaine-Kussmann.
However, the game turned two minutes later, as Sarah Martinez scored the first of her two goals on the evening at the 2:45 mark. She gave the Huskies a 2-0 lead in the 23rd minute while Alllie Beahan scored just before intermission at the 43:35 mark.
“We were not mature competitors tonight,” said OU Head Coach Nicole Nelson. “We did not do the things that have helped us reach this point. The fight and belief in what we were doing all season was not there.
“We started the first three to four minutes very confident, but as soon as we gave up a goal, we didn’t hold it together and that is part of learning to be a mature competitor.”
After 45 minutes of action, the Sooners found themselves in a 3-0 hole, the biggest deficit at the half this season, and the Huskies posted 23 shots and seven corner kicks.
“I commend Washington for their performance,” added Nelson. “They came out and hit hard and hit first. They stayed after it and kept going after it.”
In the second half, OU battled back and held a 9-5 advantage in shots, but the Huskies put the game out of reach with the fourth and final goal in the 82nd minute.
“Credit to Washington, they had some good goals and they are a good team,” said sophomore Dria Hampton who led OU with six shots (three on goal). “They definitely outplayed us and deserved the win, they had the better team today.”
Washington improved to 12-8-1 and advanced to the second round of the NCAA Tournament for the third straight season. The Huskies will face the winner of No. 1 seed Portland and UT-San Antonio on Sunday at 1 p.m.
Oklahoma (12-8-3) made the program’s second appearance in the big dance on Friday, seven years after dropping a 1-0 decision at then-No. 7 Tennessee in the first round of the 2003 tournament. Despite being picked to finish 10th in the Big 12 preseason poll, the Sooners won a program-best five conference games and lost in penalty kicks in the Big 12 Championship game.
“Our program has come a long way with this season,” said Nelson. “The one thing that I said to them after the game was the only thing we can do at this point is learn from this experience and move forward.”
While OU loses seniors Lauren Alkek, Tiana Dickson and Whitney Palmer, it will return eight starters and 19 letterwinners from a team that tied the school-record with 37 goals and was one win shy of tying the program record for wins.”
“I am grateful for the seniors for the part they have in helping us move forward,” added Nelson. “All the coaches are very proud of them.”