| 03.19.2018

Showing support for cancer research


Another tough loss has been dealt to the Idaho soccer team, who donned special pink jerseys in support of breast cancer awareness, but fell to the Utah Valley Wolverines 3-2 in overtime Sunday at Guy Wicks Field. 

For the second time this week, the Vandals put it all on the line and played two of their toughest matches this season with constant pressure on their opponent’s goal. Idaho coach Pete Showler said his inexperienced team, half of whom have never played collegiate soccer before this year, has stepped up their intensity this weekend.

Less than three minutes into the match, Utah Valley was able to score as the Wolverines put a ball into the back of the net off of the hands of Idaho goal keeper
Marina Siegl.

The Vandals would quickly answer back as freshman Gabby Leong took a cross from junior Katie Baran and buried her shot from eight yards out.

“Katie was dribbling past four people was able to get the cross off, I beat my player to the post and got the volley off,” Leong said. “(That goal) set the tempo to keep it up and score again and got us going.”

The goal may have set the Vandals in motion for a tough physical game but Idaho was not able to take the lead and despite their hard work, was playing catch-up for the rest
of regulation.

As the game went into the second half, the score was tied but the Vandals again let their opponents score within five minutes
of play.

The intensity of the match picked up and got physical as five yellow cards were handed out in just six minutes, from the 50-minute mark to the
56th minute.

The increased physicality paid off for the Vandals as freshman Kavita Battan was able to take the ball on a breakaway and force the Utah Valley goalkeeper into a one-on-one situation. She took the shot and slipped the ball right past the goalkeeper’s hands, putting it into the right corner of the net.

However as regulation play came to an end and the extra minutes of overtime started, the team let off the intensity allowing the Wolverines an opportunity to put the game away for good.

“We clawed our way back from 1-0 to 1-1 then we go from 2-1 to 2-2, we made hard work of it but … I feel we let ourselves down in that last bit of overtime,” Showler said. “I know it’s not from a lack of effort but sometimes you have to push through that barrier and that is what is going to win
those games.”

The Vandals hosted their annual Kick Cancer Game on Sunday in support of the Light a Candle Foundation. The Light a Candle Foundation is a program set up through Gritman Medical Center that provides support for people living
with cancer.

The team held a silent auction, auctioning off a team jersey and a special pink soccer ball as well as sold special concessions at Sunday’s match.

“The support of cancer is near and dear to my heart with my mom dying at such a young age, phenomenal turn out and I want to say thank you to the staff and the Light a Candle Foundation. I am just sad we couldn’t give them a win,” Showler said.

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