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Arizona soccer blanks San Diego State in exhibition to begin Becca Moros era

Photo courtesy Arizona Athletics

Arizona soccer began the Becca Moros era with a bang on Tuesday, taking down San Diego State 2-0 in a road exhibition.

Sixth-year senior Jill Aguilera and sophomore Quincy Bonds both notched first-half goals for the Wildcats, who only had five practices to prepare for this match.

It would have been Bonds’ first career goal if this was a countable game. Aguilera is used to making her mark in the scoring column. She led UA with nine goals last season and enters the 2021 season tied for fourth all-time on Arizona’s scoring list.

Moros trotted out this starting 11:

  1. Hope Hisey, GK
  2. Mariah Dunn, D
  3. Megan Chelf, D
  4. Sarah Rice, D
  5. Sabrina Enciso, D
  6. Madison Goerlinger, MF
  7. Iliana Hocking, MF
  8. Gianna Christensen, MF
  9. Desiree Foster, F
  10. Jill Aguilera, F
  11. Jordan Hall, F

The Wildcats outshot the Aztecs 10-9 and held a 5-4 edge in corner kicks.

Rice, Chelf, Foster and Christensen all made their first career starts. Rice and Chelf are sophomores. Foster and Christensen are freshmen.

Another freshman, Maddy Koleno, helped set up Aguilera’s goal, firing a shot off that post that bounced to Aguilera, who tapped it in. Freshman goalkeeper Grace Klosinski relieved Hisey for the final 30 minutes. Hisey had four saves.

Moros said leading up to the match that she planned to rotate a lot of players. 21 of Arizona’s 28 players saw the field. Sophomore midfielder Tianna Sidtikun (64), sophomore defender Jenna Studer (47) and Bonds (38) were the reserves who played the most minutes. (The full box score is at the bottom of this article.)

Arizona returns to pitch on Saturday, Aug. 14 when they host an exhibition against Grand Canyon. After that, they open the regular season on the road against WAC champion Utah Valley on Aug. 20.

The victory over SDSU should serve as a confidence boost for the Cats. The Aztecs are a quality team, returning several all-conference players from last year’s squad that went 8-3 and finished at the top of their division in the Mountain West.

Full box score