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Last-gasp winner downs Huskies to Lobos

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Last-gasp winner downs Huskies to Lobos

Olivia Van Der Jagt goes up for a header against an opposing offender during Washington's game against Portland on Sept. 2, 2021 at Husky Soccer Stadium. The UW lost to New Mexico, 2-1, on Sept. 5, 2021.

With 10 minutes remaining and a 1-0 lead in the match, a second victory of the season looked set and sealed for the Washington women’s soccer team.

But in those final minutes before the final whistle sounded, the opposition struck.

In the 81st minute, New Mexico senior forward Jadyn Edwards equalized, demoralizing the Huskies (1-4) once again. A free-kick awarded to UNM, led to teasing ball in the Washington box, waiting to be looped into the net by Edwards.

Then with 59 seconds remaining, it happened yet again, the Lobos (2-2) vaulted ahead, as freshman Zaria Katesigwa slotted home the winner in the 90th minute.

2-1 the final score, Huskies lose yet again.

Sophomore midfielder Katie O’Kane made her mark on the match, as in the 51st minute ended the dreadful drought for the Huskies. Following a poor clearance from the New Mexico goalkeeper, O’Kane latched onto the ball, and one touch later smashed it into the far side of the Lobo net.

O’Kane’s moment of brilliance was her first goal in her college career, and supplied the Huskies with a much-needed goal and eventual result. 

Despite the goal, the Huskies again failed to capitalize on many opportunities. Washington outshot the opposition 16-to-11, but were yet again unable to put the opposition out of sight, leading to the eventual collapse.

With the only goal coming off a howler from the Lobos netminder, questions remain as to the Huskies’ ability to make the most of their chances. 

Beyond shots on frame, the Huskies failed to capitalize on set pieces either, with a tally of eight corners on the match, none resulting in any meaningful panic for the Lobos’ goalkeeper. 

The UW’s struggle to find consistency up top has not been for lack of rotation. Four different central forwards were employed by head coach Nicole Van Dyke’s side as senior Summer Yates, redshirt senior Mackenzie Weinert, redshirt sophomore Margaux Clarke, and sophomore Kamryn Price all saw time on the pitch.

On the other side of the ball, the Washington defense rediscovered some of its past success, maintaining a clean sheet through 80 minutes with only one shot testing redshirt senior goalkeeper Olivia Sekany. Van Dyke’s singular change along the backline proved pivotal, as redshirt senior transfer Peyton McGee slotted into the center back position and made light work of any through balls which may have proved dangerous in prior matches. 

McGee’s inclusion was her first in the purple and gold, making her debut in stellar fashion despite coming off with 20 minutes remaining, to be replaced by senior Elena Palacios. 

The defensive woes of games past reappeared, as the Huskies collapsed in the dying moments, with McGee watching from the sideline.

Washington will have six days to rediscover its winning ways before hosting Long Beach State on Saturday, Sept. 11 at 4 p.m.

Reach writer Rajan Hans at Twitter: @RajanHans14

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