• Junior goalkeeper Emily Lyon made five saves during the first half in her first start of the season
• UNCG scored the winning goal via a header in the 74th minute
• HPU heads back out on the road for a contest with Auburn on Friday at 7:30 p.m.
HIGH POINT, N.C. – The High Point University women’s soccer team suffered a 1-0 defeat at the hands of UNCG on Monday night at Vert Stadium. HPU’s goalkeepers combined to make six saves to keep the Panthers in the contest.
“I thought our team defending was once again very strong,” head coach Marty Beall said. “UNCG is a physical team that can put you under a lot of pressure and I thought we dealt with it really well. Unfortunately, we simply weren’t good enough in the attacking third. The chances that we created were good enough, but we weren’t able to finish. We have to learn from this one and move forward.”
The game was a defensive battle from the start with neither team able to seize momentum. After 20 minutes of back-and-forth play, UNCG (2-3-1) fired off three shots in a three minute span, only to be denied by High Point’s defense and starting goalkeeper Emily Lyon. The junior earned her fifth career start, but the first since September 11, 2015. Lyon was challenged with five shots on net, but made all five saves to keep the game scoreless.
UNCG held a 10-5 edge in shots in the opening stanza thanks to the late flurry. High Point (2-4-0) was able to put four shots on net, but freshman goalkeeper Aiyanah Taylor-Cooper was up to the challenge.
The game opened up into a better offensive flow in the beginning stages of the second half. Both teams had solid opportunities off counterattacks, but the respective defenses continued to force shots from well outside the box. Senior goalkeeper Alex Hank stepped in for the Panthers in the second half and made a critical save in the 59th minute to continue the scoreless tie.
The Spartans finally broke through, though, in the 74th minute off a corner kick. Gabbi Charles’ lofted corner from the left side was sent perfectly to the middle of the box for Emily Jensen to head it past Hank for the go-ahead tally. Jensen had subbed in just prior to the corner.
High Point pushed its attack forward following the goal and had an opportunity to even things up in the 86th minute. Senior Annie Redovian curled a bar from the left side towards the middle of the box where senior Becca Rolfe got a head on the pass, only to send the ball just over the crossbar. UNCG held off for the remaining four minutes to preserve the road victory.
The Spartans held a 22-13 edge in shots, including 7-5 in shots on net. UNCG took eight corner kicks to High Point’s one. Lyon and Hank combined to make six saves for the Panthers in the defeat.
HPU now heads back out on the road to take on its fourth and final SEC foe in Auburn on Friday night. Kickoff is scheduled for 7:30 p.m.