By NU Athletic Communications
San Antonio, Texas – The Nebraska soccer team played with great energy and effort but Texas’ Kelly Wilson scored two first-half goals to lead the fourth-seeded Longhorns to a 2-0 victory over fifth-seeded Nebraska in the first round of the Big 12 Soccer Tournament on Wednesday afternoon.
With the loss, Nebraska was eliminated from the tournament and dropped to 12-8 on the season. Texas improved to 12-5-2 with the win.
“It was a good game,” NU Head Coach John Walker said. “I’m very proud of our team. They did everything we asked them to do. It was our best effort of the season.”
Despite the outcome, Nebraska came out with great energy and controlled play for the first 30 minutes. The Huskers had several good scoring chances early, while the Longhorns were back on defense until they were able to convert their first good scoring chance into a goal.
Texas struck first in the 34th minute on a goal by Wilson off assists from Ashley Foster and Carrie Schmit. Wilson took the ball at the far side of the box and beat a defender before beating NU sophomore goalkeeper Katie Wright.
The Longhorns went up 2-0 just 3:35 later on Wilson’s second goal of the game. Wilson beat Wright to a loose ball in the box and sent a header on goal, but junior defender Katie Bunkers made a sliding save for Nebraska. Unfortunately for the Huskers, Bunkers save rebounded directly to Wilson, who stuffed the ball into the net from point-blank range.
Nebraska came out with great intensity in the second half and held the Longhorns off the scoreboard, but was unable to score a goal of its own.
In the 51st minute, the Huskers had several chances against a packed-in Texas defense. Junior Aly Scace sent a ball into the box and UT goalkeeper Alex Gagarin found herself out of position. Senior Brooke Bredenberg, junior Sasha Andrews and freshman Jetta Sadusky each had shots from within eight yards, but none reached the goal as Texas defenders blocked all three attempts.
Freshman Meghan Hungerford and sophomore Abby Penas each recorded the first start of their career in the loss.
After the great effort against Texas, the Huskers are looking forward to the NCAA Tournament. Nebraska will learn its fate when the NCAA pairings and host sites are announced on Monday.