Vic Bohdan (7’) and Anna Jimmerson (10’) both scored to give UTEP a two-goal lead 10 minutes in, and it never looked back on the way to downing Incarnate Ward, 3-0, at a blustery University Field Friday evening.
Bohdan (62’) added an insurance goal midway through the second half for the Miners (2-5), who looked and controlled play throughout the contest against the Cardinals (0-3) to secure their second consecutive victory.
Alyssa Palacios was credited with six saves in posting her first shutout of the season.
“I was really proud of the team,” UTEP head coach Kevin Cross said. “It was a great team effort today. We used the whole roster. A lot of players played really well, stepped up and showed their character. I was really proud to get the shutout. It was nice to put two back-to-back performances together.”
In the fourth minute a great thru ball sprung Bohdan up the left wing. Her shot was blocked away for a corner kick but the UIW GK Sydney Huntsinger punched it clear. Three minutes later Bohdan took possession of the ball deep in the box. She dribbled past Huntsinger and then buried the shot into the empty net.
UTEP pushed the advantage to 2-0 when Jimmerson won a ball at the top of the box. She then fired a low, hard shot that Huntsinger dove but was unable to come up with it.
A promising chance in the 15th minute was wiped away by an offside call. UIW then looked to counter attack, resulting in a shot on goal by Jade Piper that Palacios cleanly corralled.
Devyn Hunley had an outstanding rip in the 23rd minute but Huntsinger timed her leap perfectly to punch it up and over the frame.
A foul in a dangerous spot gave UIW a golden chance in the 35th minute but Palacios was up to the task. She tracked and delivered the save on Sam Batley’s shot that curved over the wall.
Play turned a bit chippy to start the second half, with matching yellow cards on a Miner and Cardinal coming in the 49th minute.
Jimmerson vied for her second goal of the game with a header in the 53rd minute but the GK was able to come up with the save. Four minutes later Bohdan had a great look on a near-post shot but she was denied.
In the 62nd minute Bohdan was not to be denied. She picked off a ball in space, cut into the area and rifled a shot that kissed the cross bar and bounced directly into the back of the net to make it 3-0 Miners.
Piper and the Cardinals vied to get on the board in the 66th minute but Palacios would not have it. She registered the save on the shot by Jade Piper.
UTEP continued to maintain possession and dictate tempo down the stretch, closing out the contest in style.
The Miners will continue their homestand when they welcome perennial power Stephen F. Austin to town for a 12 p.m. kickoff on Sunday. It will be “Youth Soccer Day” and all kids (12 and younger) will get in free.