Pitt women’s soccer shut out at UC Irvine, 3-0


Juliana Vazquez and the Pitt women’s soccer team were unable to covert any offensive chances into scores against UC Irvine. Heather Tennant | Staff Photographer

By Ryan Zimba - For The Pitt News

For the second straight game, the Pitt women’s soccer team was unable to generate any opportunities on offense, falling Sunday night to the University of California, Irvine, 3-0.

The Panthers (1-4-1) were shut out for the second game in a row to start their three-game road trip. Chalk the loss up to the 5-1 UC Irvine’s toughness.

The teams went back and forth in the early stages of the game, but neither side was able to generate any offense in the attacking third.

In the 20th minute, the defenses loosened up enough to give Pitt sophomore midfielder Juliana Vazquez the Panthers’ first scoring chance of the game –– a shot that flew just wide of the post.

Shortly after, Pitt’s defense made a mistake of its own by fouling an attacking player and giving the Anteaters a free kick. Midfielder Alex Karlowitsch took the free kick, which midfielder Kiana Palacios headed home to open the scoring and give UC Irvine the lead.

As the match approached halftime, Vazquez had another chance to score. This time, her shot was blocked by an Anteaters defender, and the half ended with UC Irvine ahead, 1-0.

The second half started much faster than the first, as Palacios headed the ball into the net just four minutes into the half, extending the Anteaters’ lead to 2-0.

UC Irvine scored again in the 86th minute to go ahead 3-0 and put the game out of reach with goalkeeper Maddie Newsom closing out the final few minutes to cap off the shutout.

Overall, the Panthers managed a mere two shots on goal, well below their average of 10 going into the game. The Anteaters pummeled goalkeeper Taylor Francis with 9 shots on goal and 15 shots total.

Sophomore forward Sarah Krause was again a bright spot for the Panthers. She was responsible for both of Pitt’s shots, but Newsom came up with the save on both shots to preserve the victory and the shutout for UC Irvine.

Converting on scoring opportunities has been a big problem for coach Greg Miller’s team so far this season, as Pitt is now averaging just 0.67 goals per game.

The Panthers have a chance to improve with a pair of non-conference games left –– at Kansas Friday, Sept. 9, and back at home versus Kent State Sunday, Sept. 11 –– before opening conference play at Ambrose Urbanic Field Saturday, Sept. 17, against former Big East foe Louisville.