Game 1: 8/31 VS. Howard Payne University
In their inaugural match of the season, the University of Dallas’ women’s soccer faced non-conference team Howard Payne at home. Following the postponement of the August 30 game against Northlake College due to inclement weather, the Crusaders were eager to take the field.
The action went back and forth for much of the first half. Minutes into the second half of play, Howard Payne scored. Dallas deterred any further goals but did not score for the remainder of the second half.
Though their opponents carried the day, Dallas outshot Howard Payne 17-11. Additionally, Dallas garnered significantly more shots on goal, overshadowing Howard Payne 11-3. Freshman midfielder Izzy Barajas from Bryan, Texas, led Dallas with 4 shots, followed by forward Monica O’Donnell from Lincoln, Neb., and midfielder Gigi Garcia Orosco from San Antonio, Texas, with three shots each. All eight freshmen made their collegiate debuts.
Goalies Natalie Kutac from Bulverde, Texas, and Olivia Severson from La Crosse, Wis., each played a half, registering a save each.
Game 2: 9/6 VS. Letourneau University
Following a close match the week before, the Crusaders faced non-conference team LeTourneau University on Friday.
The LeTourneau Yellowjackets scored early into the first half. Dallas countered soon after, leveling with a goal by Izzy Barajas, her first in her collegiate career. The second half, however, brought a pair of goals for the YellowJackets and no further success for the Crusaders.
LeTourneau outshot Dallas 24-16. Once again, freshman Izzy Barajas and Gigi Orosco accumulated the most shots.
Goalie Natalie Kutac earned a total of 9 saves in her full 90-minute stint.
Although they had some difficulties the first few games of the season, sophomore forward Monica O’Donnell has high hopes for the freshman and the team as a whole.
“I think as individuals we are all very talented, but it takes time to develop team chemistry and to understand the strengths of your teammates,” said O’Donnell.
This Friday, the Crusaders head to Austin College in Sherman, Texas, followed by a home game versus McMurray University on Sunday. With a full schedule of over a dozen games remaining, Dallas has time to bounce back from a rough opening to their season.