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Arizona soccer can’t hold late lead, falls to Washington in Seattle

Photo by Ryan Kelapire

Arizona soccer has reached all sorts of new heights since Tony Amato took over as head coach in 2013.

They were oh-so-close to adding another to the list Sunday, but they were dealt a heartbreaking loss instead.

Summer Yates converted an 84th-minute penalty kick to force extra time and Ameera Hussen buried a free kick in double overtime to lift Washington to a 3-2 comeback win over No. 25 Arizona.

Had Arizona been able to hang on, it would have been its first-ever Pac-12 road sweep. The Wildcats (8-4, 2-3) squeaked past No. 15 Washington State on Thursday in Pullman.

Jada Talley put Arizona ahead in the 57th minute Sunday, bolting onto a through ball from Jill Aguilera, beating the keeper, and slotting a shot inside the near post.

Aguilera had a hand in Arizona’s first goal too, when she curled a free kick on frame. Washington goalkeeper Siena Ruelas could not hang on to it, and Ava McCray tapped it in to give the Wildcats the lead in the 27th minute.

It was the first career goal for the Cal Poly transfer, who was also making her first collegiate start.

Washington (8-3-2, 4-1) answered in the 40th minute when Makena Carr skipped a corner kick to the feet of Sianna Siemonsma. Her point-blank shot deflected off a Wildcat defender before finding the back of the net.

The Huskies outshot the Wildcats 10-2 in the first half and 19-8 for the match. Hallie Pearson fouled Carr in the left side of the box to set up Yates’ penalty kick.

Washington had a good chance on a corner in the first overtime period, but Hussen’s header went wide of the post. She didn’t miss her next opportunity, ripping an angled free kick inside the near post, past a diving Hope Hisey.

Arizona is back on the road Friday against Utah. The Wildcats have followed all of their losses with wins this season.