ASHEVILLE, N.C. --- University of Tennessee at Chattanooga senior women’s soccer player Crystal Mackezyk (Columbia, Tenn.) cut the lead in half Friday night, but the Mocs couldn’t get the equalizer, falling to UNC Asheville 2-1 in the season opener for both teams at Greenwood Field.
“We had a lot of opportunities to score late,” UTC head coach J.D. Kyzer said. “We had one-on-ones and a free kick from the corner late in the game. We had them on the ropes and should have scored.”
Freshman Emily Moseley (Nashville, Tenn.) took the pass from Chattanooga keeper freshman Hannah Dunn (Cookeville, Tenn.) in the 78th minute and dribbled down the right side. She sent a long pass to classmate Amanda Ortiz (Arlington, Tenn.) down the right side line. Ortiz sized up the field quickly and sent the ball to the middle and a waiting Mackezyk who lofted a shot from outside the box over the Bulldog keeper for the score to make it 2-1 at the 77:09 mark of the game.
“At halftime we talked about how we train and that was how we trained,” Kyzer said. “We settled down and played the way we trained in the second half. We played several freshmen so there were a lot of first-game jitters early.”
The Bulldogs scored their first goal in the 19th minute off a free kick Kaitlyn Eckert on the left side. Her kick made it into the box to teammate Amanda Dailor who headed it in at the 18:43 mark. The second goal was scored quickly in the second half.
There was a scramble for the ball on the left side of the goal in the box. The ball was sent to an open Kennedy Garrett on the right side just beyond the six-yard box. She got around her defender and sent a shot to the far post for the score to make it 2-0 in the 47th minute.
UNC Asheville controlled the ball throughout most of the game, but UTC stepped up offensively late in the game in an attempt to knot it up. The Bulldogs outshot Chattanooga 26-7 with 13 shots on goal compared to six for the Mocs.
“We played against a team that is much better than it was last year,” Kyzer said. “This game could have gone either way and was just a one-goal game. There were two very good teams out on the field and I’m very proud of girls.”
Chattanooga keeper Lauren Thomas (Germantown, Tenn.) made six saves and was in the net for both UNCA scores. She made several athletic saves, even coming out of the net to take the ball of a Bulldog player’s foot.
Both teams substituted their keepers in the 66th minute and Chattanooga’s Dunn was tested several times and made five saves for the Mocs. With less than 20 minutes, she punched out a shot, but the Bulldogs couldn’t capitalize, chipping the ball over the cross bar.
“Lauren [Thomas] is a very good keeper for us,” Kyzer said. “That is a position you don’t usually sub in a game and when you do it makes you worried. She’s coming in cold, but Hannah [Dunn] did a great job.”
In the 75th minute, UNC Asheville hit a short corner and then served it into the box. Chattanooga was able to block the shot, but the Bulldogs managed to gather it up for a shot. Dunn, however, stretched out and gathered in the save.
The Mocs fall to 0-1 on the year while the Bulldogs start out unblemished at 1-0. Chattanooga returns to action late Sunday at Austin Peay. The game time was changed to 6 p.m. Eastern time. Follow the action at GoMocs.com.
No. Time Team Goal scorer Assist (Description)
1. 18:43 UNCA DAILOR, Amanda (1) ECKERT, Kaitlyn (Header from close in)
2. 46:03 UNCA GARRETT, Kennedy (1) ECKERT, Kaitlyn (Blast from 15 yards)
3. 77:09 UTC Crystal Mackezyk (1) Emily Moseley, Amanda Ortiz (Shot from 6 yards out)