Photo by Elisa Schmitt, TexAgs
Texas A&M Soccer

A&M soccer uses loss to Houston Dash as learning experience, fall 3-0 at Ellis Field

March 23, 2019

The A&M soccer team suffered their second loss of the spring season as they were defeated by the Houston Dash, 3-0, at Ellis Field on Saturday evening at Ellis Field. The Dash, an NWSL professional team, dominated possession for the duration of the match and finished the game with 19 shots.

“They are a professional team – and a really good professional team at that,” A&M head coach G Guerrieri said. “We play them every year, and that’s the best Dash team that we’ve played. The opportunity for our girls to play against them was great.”

The Aggies suffered a narrow 2-1 defeat to the Dash last spring but were without their lone scorer from last season, Ally Watt, in this year’s edition. Watt was called up to the United States U23 National Team to play in the Thorns Spring Invitational earlier this week.

“Not having Ally today made it tougher for us, but it provided an opportunity for Asdis [Halldorsdottir] and Abby Grace Cooper,” Guerrieri said. “Though Ally is missing this experience, she is getting great experience against other professional teams out in Portland.”

“Really I was pleased with the whole second half effort. We didn’t come into the game gambling to win, we wanted to get the most out of it and I thought we did that.”
- A&M head coach G Guerrieri

The Dash broke the ice in the 27th minute after a corner kick bounced in the box and found the head of striker Veronica Latsko who netted it from two yards out. Just a minute later, Dash star Kealia Ohai followed up with a goal of her own, slotting a ball near post on a 1-on-1 with A&M goalkeeper Olivia Ausmus.

One of the Aggies’ few chances in the match was initiated by freshman forward Ali Russell, who ran onto a perfectly slotted through ball and attempted to hit it on the half volley. Dash goalkeeper Jane Campbell was able to jump and get a hand on it to prevent it from going into the net.

“Ali had a good day coming in during the second half and creating a couple chances. Really I was pleased with the whole second half effort,” Guerrieri said. “We didn’t come into the game gambling to win, we wanted to get the most out of it and I thought we did that.”

The Dash netted their third goal and final goal of the day in the 65th minute after the Aggies struggled to clear it out of the six-yard box. The Dash then cleaned it up and sent a rocket into the back of the net.

Freshman goalkeeper Shantel Hutton made her collegiate debut in the latter part of the second half and made a couple of tough saves, not allowing a goal. Hutton was one of three early enrollees that came to A&M in January. The other two, Ali Russell and Katie Smith, also played significant time on Saturday and in the first match against Lamar.

“It was a terrific first appearance for Shantel. I was really, really, pleased for her and for all of our newcomers,” Guerrieri said. “For them, they had a choice of staying in high school and playing against [other high schools] or they can come and play against the Houston Dash. That’s why they are here — it’s a big part of their development.”

The Aggies return to spring action on March 31 as they host A&M-Corpus Christi. Kickoff is slated for 1:00 p.m.

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