Tessa Carlin | Photo courtesy Michael Reese
The UTEP soccer team (7-4-3, 2-2-1 C-USA) will conclude a three-game homestand by squaring off against LA Tech (11-2-2, 3-2-1 C-USA) at 7 p.m. MT Thursday and Southern Miss (6-7, 1-4 C-USA) at 12 p.m. MT Sunday.
“With five games left in the season, every game is important and every point is important,” UTEP head coach Kathryn Balogun said. “However we want our girls to take each game as an individual task. We have a big opportunity to walk away with some big home points, but the goal is to remain focused on the next task ahead which is LA Tech. They have had some really good results, and a couple of players have had a great year finding the back of the net.”
UTEP fought hard only to be upended at home, 1-0, by WKU on Oct. 10. The Miners had a 7-6 edge for shots on goal against the Lady Toppers but couldn’t find a way to beat Anne-Marie Ulliac.
Emily Parrott delivered five saves, with her lone blemish coming on a try from Ansley Cate (52′) seven minutes into the second half.
UTEP is in search of its first win against LA Tech, which has a 3-0-1 advantage in the series with the Miners. Thursday’s match-up will mark the first in El Paso between the programs, with three previously in Ruston, La., and another at the C-USA Championships
The Miners have dominated the series with Southern Miss, posting a 10-1-1 mark in 12 prior meetings. That includes a 6-0 advantage when playing in El Paso. Last year the programs battled to a 1-1 draw in Hattiesburg, Miss.
After allowing six goals in the loss at Middle Tennessee on Oct. 6, UTEP regrouped to limit WKU to one tally last time out on Oct. 10. The Miners have posted four shutouts on the season while holding five other opponents to one goal.
With five games remaining in the regular season, the Miners are in a three-way tie for seventh place in the C-USA standings. UTEP is in search of a top-eight showing, which would allow it to qualify for the C-USA Championships for the first time since 2016.
Five league games are left on UTEP’s schedule, but it has matched its win total for both overall (seven) and C-USA contests (two) from a year ago. The Miners are playing consistently well at both home (4-2-1) and on the road (3-2-2). UTEP sports a +2 goal differential (21-19) while also staking advantages for both shots (187-169) and shots on goal (94-66).
Quick Overview On Tech
LA Tech is 11-2-2 overall, including 3-2-1 in C-USA play. The Lady Techsters pace the league and are among the nation’s best for goals (46-second), assists (38-sixth) and points (130-third). They also have the most overall wins (11) in the league. Most recently they rallied from a two-goal deficit to forge a tie against Rice (10/13). Autumn Woodward (15 goals-first C-USA/second NCAA) paces the high-scoring attack, with Amber Posthauer (eight-fourth C-USA/47th NCAA) also having been a playmaker. Carlotta Cartelli has earned the bulk of playing time in net, registering 46 saves.
Quick Overview On Southern Miss
Southern Miss compiled a 5-3 mark in nonconference action, but it has struggled through five games (1-4) in C-USA play. It has taken care of business at home (4-1), but has been challenged on the road (2-6). Hailey Pohevitz is the top goal scorer (seven), but three others have four goals each. Pohevitz also shares the squad lead in assists (two). Kendall Mindnich has garnered most of the playing time in net, racking up 47 saves.
Tickets are $5 for adults and $3 for kids, and may be bought by calling (915) 747-5234.