Soccer playoff-bound despite loss

With a playoff spot on the line, the Southern Utah University soccer team traveled to take on the Seattle University Redhawks in a conference matchup that the Redhawks won 4-0.

The scoring barrage got started early for the Redhawks when, in the first minute, senior Sarah Creighton connected with sophomore Caroline Penner on a cross pass in the penalty box. This resulted in a quick tap-in goal for Seattle, giving them the early 1-0 lead.

Not long after, in the 21st minute, sophomore Marla Gaudlitz slipped a pass through the Southern Utah defense, finding Creighton for an easy goal to make it 2-0 in favor of Seattle U.

The Redhawks didn’t let off in the first half, scoring again in the 32nd minute. Graduate student Makinzie Packwood corralled a missed shot from junior Nina Prusa and snuck it past Southern Utah goalie Julia Ortega to up the score 3-0.

The defense for the Thunderbirds tightened up a bit in the second half, keeping Seattle from scoring for 26 minutes before allowing them to score off a stolen pass from Southern Utah. Freshman Katie Piburn drove in and passed to freshman Emma de la Cruz at the top of the penalty box, who converted the open shot and built the Redhawks’ lead to 4-0.

That score held for the remainder of the game. With the win, Seattle moves to 7-8-2 overall and 5-2-1 in conference play. The loss bumps the Thunderbirds to 3-9-5 overall and 3-4-1 in conference play, snapping their two-game winning streak in the process.

What’s next
Despite the loss, the Thunderbirds clinched the final Western Athletic Conference playoff spot due to an Abilene Christian University tie with Grand Canyon University. The Thunderbirds now set their sights on Utah Valley University, the first-place team in the conference. UVU will host the match on Monday, Oct. 23, at 6 p.m. to end the regular season.

Author: Aidan Mortensen
Photographer: Anden Garfield
Editor: Anden Garfield