UTSA’s season ended in what has been typical fashion for the 2015 season as they fell to a 4-0 loss to Rice on Thursday. Rice managed the win in comprehensive fashion at Rice Soccer Complex as they tore UTSA apart.
An error from UTSA allowed Rice to open the scoring supremely early, as a steal gave Rice the opportunity in the fifth minute. Dominique Mazero stole possession in midfield and ran in on goal, sending it past the keeper to open the scoring.
Rice remained on the attack, but the UTSA defense was proving strong to deny the Owls attacks. That could well have come to an end in the 25th minute when Lauren Hughes got a header away which beat the keeper but came off the crossbar.
The crossbar again denied Rice in the 34th minute as Madeline Lundberg’s shot came down off the bar. But that rebound fell to Nia Stallings, who was left in front of the goal, and scored with a simple finish to double the lead.
It was a stellar night for the crossbar which made its third save of the night in the 44th minute. This time it was UTSA who were denied as Sam Batley was able to get a shot away, which seemed destined for the net, but was denied by the crossbar, keeping it 2-0 at halftime.
The Roadrunners came out from the break determined to get back in to the match and Brianna Livecchi was looking dangerous. Livecchi went on the attack, having two early chances but some solid goalkeeping kept the match 2-0.
Rice started to take control again after the 50th minute, but yet again the crossbar was on hand to keep the match 2-0. This time it denied Holly Hargreaves whose effort was well taken but couldn’t beat the goal.
It was a good job from the UTSA defense throughout much of the second half as they kept Rice in check. But they struggled to create offensively, something which has been a problem all season.
Forced to push players forward which allowed the Owls space to exploit on the counter attack, which they duly took. In the 75th minute Danielle Spriggs to hit a powerful cross, which found Darcy Mickalow who headed it home powerfully to make it three.
Rice sealed the four goal win when Marissa Topolski found Annie Walker with a cross, allowing Walker to head it home powerfully for 4-0. The result keeps Rice in with a shot of getting the number two seed while UTSA are now all but sealed as last place in the conference.