Sept. 23, 2012
Final Stats | Photo Gallery | Coach Long's postgame interview
HURRICANE, W.Va. -- Four goals from the Marshall University women's soccer team proved to be more than enough offense as the Thundering Herd defeated UTEP 4-1 Sunday on a cool and clear afternoon at Hurricane High School.
The victory marked the first time MU scored four times in one game since last year's team beat Eastern Kentucky 4-0 on the road on Sept. 9. It also improved Marshall back to a .500 record (5-5-0, 1-1-0 Conference USA).
UTEP fell to 7-4-0 (0-2-0 C-USA).
"We had a certain way we wanted to play today, and we executed it pretty well," said Marshall head coach Kevin Long. "We worked hard and won the individual battles, and I thought it was an effective day for us."
Marshall was outshot 10-2 in the first half but found a way to score on each shot attempt and lead the Miners 2-1 at the break.
Senior Chelsey Maiden put the Herd on the board first (21') with an easy header on an open net. Freshman Kelly Culicerto began the scoring play when her crossing pass to the far post found the head of sophomore Alyssa Cathey and took Miner goalkeeper Sarah Dilling out of position. Cathey redirected her own header to Maiden in the center of the penalty area, ensuring an easy put-away for Marshall's leading scorer.
UTEP answered less than two minutes later when junior Jade Babcock slipped through the Herd defense and set up Azia Nicholson for an easy score. Babcock took a pair of shots which were saved brilliantly by Marshall's senior goalkeeper Lindsey Kerns, but Nicholson would gather the wayward rebound on Babcock's second shot and put it away for the tie (22').
Five minutes later, a foul by UTEP in the penalty area allowed Marshall to regain the lead via an Erin Simmons PK (28').
Marshall cruised in the second half, outshooting UTEP 7-5 and finding two more goals from Maiden and Simmons.
Maiden extended the lead in the 54th minute, earning a breakaway along the right side and scoring on a one-on-one with Dilling.
In the 74th minute, Simmons rounded out the scoring when she came up with a loose ball inside the penalty area and slid a shot beneath the hip of Dilling's diving effort to stop it.
UTEP outshot Marshall 15-9 (6-5 in shots on goal) in the contest and won the corner kicks battle 5-2.
Marshall scored on four of the five shots put on frame.
Kerns made five saves; Dilling made one.
"We like where we're sitting right now," continued Long after the game. "We're in control of what we can control, and that's a big deal for us compared to where we've been in other years."
The Herd will look to improve next weekend when it travels to UAB on Friday and Memphis on Sunday.