TEMPE – Either way, playing at No. 17 LSU was going to be a good indicator for Arizona football.
Turns out they’re still a major work in progress under their new head coach.
Marked by errors in their third defense, the Wildcats lost 2-0 to the Tigers on Thursday, dropping to 1-2 to start the Becca Moros time.
“We failed,” said the AU coach.
LSU scored both goals early in the first half, quickly eliminating any threat of surprise. Arizona helped them.
At the 11th minute, Maddie Moreau exploited Wildcat’s passive defense by making a few unchallenged dribbles into the box before slicing a shot in the top corner.
The UA players who didn’t walk were just a minor blunder from the 29th minute, when the baseline returned the ball to the back of its own box.
Arizona goalie Hope Hisey played the ball short to Sabrina Enciso, who passed it on to the midfielder Maddy Koleno. The freshman immediately sent him back to Enciso, who panicked and made a pass through the box which was deflected by the LSU forward. Alésia Garcia.
Athena Kuehn jumped on the loose ball near the penalty spot and placed it in front of a scrambled Hisey.
Arizona football trailed No.17 LSU 2-0 at halftime. The Tigers lead the Wildcats 14-2. This goal sums up how things have gone so far. pic.twitter.com/npmQOYRN5G
– Ryan Kelapire (@RKelapire) September 2, 2021
“We made a bunch of mistakes and they took advantage of it,” Moros said. “We are trying to build from the back. In the past, girls have been told to never go back to the goalie. We saw it in the [Utah Valley] match, where people just dribble past the goalie and were afraid to replay it.
“It’s a huge change in mindset, but you can’t build as a team if you’re not ready to create power play in the defensive third, so this is something we have to keep going. to work, and we were caught playing too deep rather than stretching them first and then trying to play.
Struggling to connect the short, quick passes their new system requires, the Wildcats were unable to counter. They were limited to six shots and no corners. This is the second time they have been excluded this season. Third if you include exposure to the GCU.
“It’s not a problem, we have a number of things we need to work on,” Moros said. “When you win you don’t feel like you have to change anything and when you lose you feel like you have to change everything. We need to keep doing what we have done well, move forward and allow the girl process to take hold. It’s going to take us a little longer than, say, today.
It didn’t help that Arizona lacked a starting defenseman Ava mccray and midfielder Iliana Hocking to the injury. They are two of the most seasoned players on the team. 17 different Wildcats played Thursday; 13 were freshmen or sophomores.
If there is a bright side, it’s that Arizona fought until the final whistle. Jordan Room and Jill Aguilera were dangerous on the wing, and the first year forward Nicole dallin almost scored his first career goal in the 85th minute, landing a clear shot from the top of the box
Mollee swift, the reigning SEC Defensive Player of the Week, made a diving save to keep the Cats at bay.
“I’m happy with the way our players coming off the bench played,” said Moros. “They did a great job for us. I also thought we kept playing and competing the whole game so in terms of mentality it shows we were determined even after losing two goals which can be a bit frustrating. Especially when it happens on your mistakes.
The Sun Devil Desert Classic is always a ghoulish event due to the heat, but Thursday was mild compared to previous years. Temperatures were in the 90’s and there was occasional cloud cover.
Even still, UA forward Quincy’s obligations came out at the end of the second half after “getting too hot,” Moros said. Bonds was on the pitch for a few minutes before the coaches helped him leave.
Arizona returned to Tucson after Thursday’s loss, but will return to Tempe later this weekend to face Cal State Northridge on Sunday at 11 a.m. MST. The Matadors (1-4) lost to Arizona State 4-2 in Game 1 of the doubles program on Thursday.