The University of Wyoming soccer team got back in the win column Friday with a 3-1 home victory against Idaho State Friday at the Madrid Sports Complex.
The Cowgirls (4-2-1) bounced back from rough road tough trip the weekend before with a tie at North Dakota State (1-1) and their first losses of the season to Minnesota (4-0) and St. Thomas (3-0).
“I think everyone needs to be reminded, especially when things get hard, that we are here to have a good time,” UW coach Colleen Corbin said in a press release. “It was really fun to embrace that before the game. There’s always going to be uncertainty when you start off well, and then you struggle for a couple matches.
“Focusing on that joy component helps to ground and remind you of why you’re here.”
UW’s three scores Friday were a mixture of various offensive threats against the Bengals (0-6-1). The Cowgirls netted the game’s first goal in the 18th minute when forward Faith Joiner scored her team-leading third goal of the season from a feed from forward Alyssa Bedard.
Bedard also helped produce the second goal. Her offensive pressure resulted in a penalty kick, and midfielder Jamie Tatum paid it off, besting Idaho State goalkeeper McKayla Wetsel in the 66th minute, which put the Cowgirls ahead 2-1.
Cowgirls’ forward Taylor Brook put the finishing touch on the victory when she deposited the ball in the back of the net off a corner from Tatum in the 74th minute.
“The offensive chances we generated came from our defensive pressure, which is great,” Corbin said. “The creativity was brilliant today. We had really dynamic runs. We had really good balls that are getting played through. Overall, very, very happy with the adjustments we made from last game to this game.”
Wyoming outshot Idaho State 17-6. Bedard, Joiner and forward Maddi Chance led with four shots apiece.
UW goalkeeper Alex Daws tallied one save in her fifth game allowing one goal or fewer this season.
“I was very, very proud of our effort,” Corbin said. “I thought it was really good on our side.”
Wyoming concludes nonconference play next week. The Cowgirls host Northern Colorado at 4 p.m. Thursday in the Front Range Derby.
The UW volleyball team split it matches on Friday with a thrilling five-set win against UC Santa Barbara and a four-set loss against Northwestern during the first day of the UniWyo Invite.
The result from the Cowgirls’ match against Missouri Saturday evening was not available at press time. The action at the UniWyo Sports Complex concludes the nonconference portion of the schedule for the Cowgirls.
Wyoming (5-3) went the distance against the Gauchos (2-6) with set scores of 17-25, 25-22, 28-26, 20-25, 15-13 to open the invite.
In set five alone, there were six ties and three lead changes in the race to 15 points. UW was able to gain control to force match point with back-to-back points that broke a 12-12 tie. After a UCSB kill made it 14-13, KC McMahon’s 15th kill of the match sealed the comeback win for the Cowgirls.
McMahon and Jackie McBride, who hit .429 in the match, led the Cowgirls with 15 kills each. Hailey Zuroske tallied her first double-double of the season with 14 kills and led the Cowgirls with 15 digs.
Lydeke King added eight kills, hit .462 and tied a career-best with seven total blocks against UCSB. For the match, the Gauchos out-blocked Wyoming 15-8.
UW’s Abby Olson came off the bench for a team-high 28 assists. Kyra Slavik added 18, while Payton Chamberlain had 13. Kaitlyn Gehler also tallied 13 digs for her fifth straight match with double-figure digs.
Against Northwestern (3-4), it was tough sledding for UW in the 25-13, 18-25, 25-14, 25-11 loss. The Wildcats hit .371 in the nightcap, while the Cowgirls hit just .120. NW also had a 10-2 advantage in blocks and had six service aces to Wyoming’s two.
McMahon again led the way with 10 kills, and McBride and Faith Waitsman added eight each.
Olsen led Wyoming with 17 assists and added six digs, while Chamberlain had 10 assists and a team-best seven digs. Teresa Garza came off the bench and tallied a pair of kills and had six digs.