Avery Ford's goal kept Utah's unbeaten streak against non-conference foes intact
Sept. 22, 2013
SALT LAKE CITY – Utah soccer received a late goal from Avery Ford to earn a hard-fought draw against Oklahoma on Sunday afternoon at Ute Field.
“This wasn’t our best game and you have to credit Oklahoma for defending our passing well,” head coach Rich Manning said. “We played with good character coming back but we just weren’t sharp with our touches today.”
The Utes attacked early with Allie Wisner getting the first shot off in the seventh minute. Ford had a chance go high in the 29th minute and Kaycee Buckley was denied by the Sooner goalkeeper just a minute later.
“I feel good and this is the healthiest I’ve felt since the opening weekend,” Luke stated. “Communication with the defenders has been great this season because it’s our second year together and we know each other’s style of play. We want to do well and games like today just come down to our energy level and which team wants it more.”
Utah was aggressive to start the second half with Baylee Nielsen having her best try of the afternoon hitting the post just two minutes in. However, after a corner kick for the Utes, Oklahoma countered and scored to take the lead 1-0.
Buckley looked the likeliest to score for Utah over the next 20 minutes, having three chances to even the score. The breakthrough occurred in the 79th minute as Taylor Slattery fed Ford for her second goal of the season.
In the first overtime, it was Nielsen and Buckley again with Utah’s best chances. However, time ran out on this day for the Utes as they earned their fourth draw of the season.
Utah finished with a 14-11 edge in shots and a 9-3 advantage in corner kicks. Luke finished with six saves after allowing her first goal of the season in 510 minutes played (0.18 GAA).
“We had low energy today at the start,” Ford said. “But overall, we worked hard and it’s great that we came back. We just want to win so badly and now we start Pac-12 play.”
The Utes open Pac-12 play on Friday evening at 7:30 p.m. against No. 12 California.