Shelby Ostler highlighted the Thunderbirds’ first match of the season with a goal just prior to the half. UNLV outshot SUU 20-8 shot advantage and a 6-4 advantage in corner kicks. The Thunderbirds had Elyse Alexander, Morgan Bridge, Megan Mower and Ostler each record shots-on-goal in the match.
UNLV came out on the attack in the first half, taking 12 shots and coming away with three goals. Southern Utah continued to compete and put together some offensive threats before Ostler put SUU on the board. Just minutes before the half, Mower headed a shot towards the goal but had it turned away by UNLV keeper Ashlee De La Cruz who could only knock the ball away and Ostler corralled the rebound and fired into the back of the net for the score.
“It was great to see Shelby get on the board after Megan gained great position in the box and got off a great header,” 10th-year head coach Brian Stock said of the goal. “We were able to put together some nice offensive attacks today but just couldn’t get a run in the box. We showed some potential to be a good attacking team today, which I was very pleased to see.”
UNLV held a 3-1 lead at the half and quickly regained a three-goal advantage, scoring a goal less than a minute into the second period. The Rebels later recorded their final two goals within a minute of each other on two perfectly placed shots into the top upper “V” of the goal.
SUU continued to pressure but the Rebel defense turned away the Southern Utah offensive threats to keep their 6-1 advantage and pick up a win in the exhibition match. Thunderbird keeper Charly Booth finished with seven saves.
“Today gave us a chance to come out and match up against a solid UNLV squad. We were able to see some very positive things that we will continue to build on and also a of couple areas we will improve on prior to opening the season next week,” added Stock. “Again, I was pleased with the offensive attacks we put together today and am really looking forward to having a good solid week of practice before we open the season next Friday.”
Southern Utah opens the season against Utah Valley University at Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy, Utah 5:00pm next Friday.