TUCSON, Ariz. – Arizona women’s soccer ended Friday night with a loss to Portland Thorns FC, 10-0, at Kino Sports Complex. Tonight marked the opening of the Portland Thorns Preseason Tour and the Wildcats spring schedule.
“We can take away a lot of positives from tonight,” head coach Tony Amato said following the game. ”A lot of the girls showed me how hard they can compete and the plays they want to make. They were really defending hard and trying to do the right thing. If they can do it against some of the best players in the world, they can take confidence out of that and bring it to some of the colleges we will play later on. We can only take positives out of this.”
The Thorns showed their dominance early in the game scoring their first goal three minutes into the game by Jessica McDonald. Three minutes later, Angie Kerr recorded her first goal of the game to give the Thorns an early 2-0 lead.
The Wildcats held on defensively keeping the Thorns scoreless for 27 minutes until the 33rd minute when Rachel Van Hollebeke made a goal assisted by McDonald. The Thorns led the Wildcats, 4-0, going in to halftime.
Eight minutes into the second half, McDonald made her second goal of the night; shortly after Van Hollebeke answered with her second goal at 53 minutes.
With a score of 9-0, the Wildcats were able to hold the Thorns scoreless for 22 minutes. Portland midfielder Mana Shim recorded her second goal of the night in the 89th minute to finish the game at a 10-0 victory. The Thorns recorded a total of 29 shots, 19 on goal.
“This game really gave our team perspective on our level and the other levels out there,” junior Shaeffer Skadsen said. “We got a good idea of what’s to come, what’s out there and what to work for. It inspires us to play quicker and to really capitalize on our shots.”
Arizona senior goalkeeper Gabby Kaufman made nine saves, five coming from the first half.
“It was such a great experience,” Kaufman said. “For us, it was such a growing experience mentally and physically knowing that we were able to compete with teams like this. We have nothing to lose, only things to gain and that’s how we are going to go into next season.”
“No one wants to lose 10-0 but I think every one of us can walk off the field saying we did our best and gave it our all,” Skadsen said. “We all learned something and we will take so much from this opportunity.”
Up next, the Cats will return to Murphey Field at Mulcahy Stadium, in Tucson, Ariz., to take on New Mexico on Sun., March 30, at 11 a.m. This match concludes the home slate for the spring schedule before the Wildcats travel to El Paso, Texas, Las Cruces, N.M. and Flagstaff, Ariz. for the remainder of the spring schedule.
For continued coverage of Arizona women’s soccer, visit ArizonaWildcats.com, follow @ArizonaWSoccer on Twitter and Instagram, and on Facebook at facebook.com/ArizonaSoccer.