Lady Techsters Win WAC Opener 1-0
Oct. 2, 2011
RUSTON, La. - Senior Olivia Lukasewich (Woodbridge, Ontario) scored the only goal of the game to give the Louisiana Tech soccer team a 1-0 victory over New Mexico State Saturday afternoon at Lady Techster Soccer Complex in the Western Athletic Conference opener for both teams. The win was the first to open conference play in Lady Techster history.
"The win today was massive," said head coach Kevin Sherry. "If you are going to finish in a tie at the end of the season, a win like the one today is huge because of the head-to-head win."
LA Tech improves to 8-2-4 on the season and 1-0 in the WAC. The Aggies are now 7-5-1 and 0-1 in conference.
Early in the 31st minute, Lukasewich ran on to a pass from junior Finola Corley (Telford, England) and sent a shot into the bottom-left corner of the net.
"Finola had a lot of heart and effort to track down a ball that she normally wouldn't run down," said Lukasewich. "She toe-poked the ball into open space and I ran on to it. While I didn't see the goal, I had a vision of where the goal was and I put the ball into the bottom corner of the net."
The goal was Lukasewich's sixth of the year and is the 10th most in a single season in Tech history. Corley's assist was the first of her career in a Lady Techster uniform.
While Tech controlled the first half, NMSU dominated the second as they kept the ball in their half of the field for most of the period and outshot the Lady Techsters 7-1 in the half. Even with the increased pressure, Tech's defense held strong to preserve the win.
"In the second half New Mexico State came out to play and put pressure on us in the second half," Sherry said. "I am really proud of the team as they stood up to a physical barrage and survived to the end."
Sophomore Caitlin Updyke (Broomfield, Colo.) stopped four shots and earned her eighth shutout of the year, which broke her own record for the most in a single season that she set in 2010.
The Lady Techsters were held to nine shots and did not reach double-digits in shot attempts for only the second time this season. Senior Scotti Culton (Waterloo, Ill.), sophomore Taylor Dennis (Albuquerque, N.M.) and Lukasewich lead Tech with two shots apiece. Along with Culton and Lukasewich, junior Mo Rockwell (Salt Lake City, Utah) was the only other player to put a shot on goal.
The Aggies were led offensively by Katie Smith with three shots. Amber Harrington and Daisy Hernandez both took two shots apiece. Jessica Schutter saved two shots in her fourth start in goal this season.
Tech plays two games on the road next weekend, facing Nevada Friday night and Utah State Sunday afternoon. The Lady Techsters' next home match is Sunday, October 16 against Idaho.
For more information on LA Tech soccer, visit the home of Louisiana Tech Athletics at LATechSports.com. Also follow sports information contact Phillip Pongratz on Twitter at www.twitter.com/LATechPPongratz for the latest and most recent soccer news.