LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – Sam Houston State was unable to slow down Little Rock in route to being shutout for the first time this season as the Trojans downed the Bearkats, 5-0, on Saturday night at the Coleman Sports & Rec Complex.
Sam Houston (2-3-0) produced 11 shots, including six on goal but Little Rock (3-2-0) registered 20 shots including 13 on goal. Bearkat goalkeeper Christina Hendershot recorded eight saves in 90 minutes and Beryl Smith led the Kats with three shots.
The Trojans’ five goals came from five different players. The match closed out a brief two-game road trip for Sam Houston. The Bearkats will return to action next Friday against Louisiana. Kickoff is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. and will mark the first of four straight matches at home.
Little Rock set the tone three minutes in, capitalizing on its first opportunity as Lisa Ryan struck for her first goal of the season courtesy of a lengthy free kick. Sam Houston saw a pair of chances as Beryl Smith and Micaela Birt connected on back-to-back shots but could not convert.
In the 20th minute, the Trojans added on, using a header from Fali Garuba on a long ball from Nora Hellmers for the 2-0 advantage. Sam Houston avoided further damage three minutes later as the shot from Arola Aparicio Gil clanked off the post and was cleared.
Jaclyn Purvine added her second goal of the season and put the Trojans up 3-0 in the 32nd minute. The junior raced down the left side before firing in to the back of the net.
The Bearkats were out-shot 12-6 in the opening half while goalkeeper Christina Hendershot recorded six saves and staved off further damage via nine Little Rock shots on goal and three corners. Smith tallied three of Sam Houston’s shots while Mackenzie Smith added two and Micaela Birt posted one.
Sam Houston has trouble slowing down the Trojans in the second, as Little Rock tacked on two more goals, beginning with a rebound shot from Doro Greulich in the 65th minute for a 4-0 advantage.
In the 77th minute, Talia Graves grabbed the rebound and sent it home to add further insurance. The Trojans out-shot the Bearkats, 8-5, in the frame.
Opening thoughts from head coach Tom Brown…
“We’re obviously very disappointed. Giving up that early goal really kind of shocked the players. As a staff, we didn’t have them prepared to compete as well as we could have.”
Head coach Tom Brown on areas of improvement…
“I think really our focus individually has struggled between the road trip and the Hurricane and with everything going on. I just think maybe we were more complacent coming out after the win we had against Jackson State. We spoke to the team that we didn’t think training on Monday and Tuesday was up to our level.”