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Arizona soccer remains undefeated with draw at Nebraska

Arizona freshman Sami Baytosh scored her first collegiate goal against Nebraska to keep the Wildcats undefeated.
Photo courtesy of Arizona Athletics

Arizona soccer was hoping to come home with a 3-0 record after they visited Nebraska. The Wildcats almost got there. While they didn’t manage to win their third match, they fought back to secure a 1-1 draw and remain undefeated.

Arizona was outshot by Nebraska 11-8 but was able to put more of its shots on goal. The Wildcats put five of those eight shots on goal compared to the Cornhuskers’ four of 11. The Huskers also earned more corner kicks, outdoing the ‘Cats 6-1.

Once again, Hope Hisey had a strong game in goal. The reigning Pac-12 Goalkeeper of the Week saved four shots.

It was a physical game, as all of Arizona’s early matches have been. The Wildcats were whistled for 14 fouls and got three yellow cards while the Cornhuskers fouled 15 times.

The Wildcats kept their heads, though. After a scoreless first half that saw 19 of the 29 total fouls whistled, Nebraska’s Jordan Zane finally broke through with a goal in the 62nd minute. There was still plenty of time.

Things heated up for Arizona in the 71st minute. First, Megan Chelf picked up a yellow card in her second straight match. Less than two minutes later, teammate Illiana Hocking was also shown the card. It was the third of the match for Arizona with Ella Hatteberg getting one in the 60th minute. With the three cards, the Wildcats now have six in their first three matches.

Just seven seconds after the final yellow card, freshman Sami Baytosh put the ball past former Arizona goalkeeper Samantha Hauk. Hauk transferred to Nebraska after the 2020 season and has now been denied a win by her former team in two straight seasons.

The equalizer came off an assist by sophomore Maddy Koleno giving her two straight contests with an assist. For Baytosh, it was her first career goal of the regular season although she had a goal in the opening exhibition against NAU.

The 1-1 score would stand at the end of regulation and leave the teams with their first tie under the new rules, giving Arizona a 2-0-1 record. Beginning this season, regular-season soccer matches do not have overtime. If the game is tied at the end of 90 minutes, it goes into the books as a tie.

In postseason play, teams will play up to two 10-minute extra periods, but there will be no golden goal that causes sudden death. Each extra period will be played in its entirety. If neither team can score after the extra 20 minutes, the match will go to penalty kicks.

Arizona will return to Tucson to prepare for the last of a three-match road trip. The Wildcats go on the road to face Grand Canyon University on Thursday, Sept. 1 before finally returning to Mulcahy Stadium to face UAB on Sunday, Sept. 4.