SAN ANTONIO -- Caitlin Kennedy scored in the first half and Dianna Pfenninger made two game-saving, second-half saves to lead sixth-seeded Texas to a 1-0 victory over No. 3 seed Iowa State in front of 656 fans at the Blossom Athletic Complex in the quarterfinals of the 2005 Big 12 Soccer Championship on Wednesday, Nov. 2.
The 1-0 win for UT (11-7-1) over ISU (11-6-3) not only earned the Horns their eighth triumph in their last 10 games and their seventh shutout of the season, but also advanced them to the conference tournament semifinals for the fourth time in the last five seasons.
The Longhorns and Cyclones were locked in a 0-0 tie through the first 39-plus minutes of action despite Texas holding a slight edge in shots and having Iowa State goalkeeper Joanna Haig come up with two stops. Then, in the 40th minute, senior Julie Gailey (San Ramon, Calif.) played a through ball into the right side of the box to Kennedy, who laced a shot into the lower left-hand corner for her sixth goal of the year and a 1-0 UT lead. Although the Horns continued to press over the remaining five minutes of the half, ISU's defense held strong and kept it a one-goal contest heading into the intermission.
In the second half, the contest remained a one-goal affair as UT produced some early chances before Iowa State put together an offensive flurry just outside of 20 minutes remaining in regulation, including a shot by Kate Kirwan that Pfenninger (Sugar Land, Texas) made a leaping save on - catching the blast just beneath the crossbar. From there, the Longhorns' one-goal lead continued to persist through the 88th minute, when Iowa State again had another chance to knot the match when Kristina Baumann broke free inside the box and ripped a shot toward the far corner of the net with just under 90 seconds remaining, but Pfenninger came up with a diving stop to preserve the advantage. Texas then pushed the ball into ISU's end of the field to close out the final seconds and pick up the win. While Pfenninger improved to 9-5-1 overall behind a two-save effort, Haig incurred the loss despite posting five stops on the evening.
Headlining the Texas offense on the night was Ashley Foster (Athens, Ga.), who fired a game-high six shots, Kennedy, who took over the team scoring lead with her team-high tying second game-winning score of the year, and Gailey, who posted her club-best fifth assist. Meanwhile, Iowa State, which outshot UT by an 11-7 margin in the second half, had its attack paced by Baumann and Meghan Smith, who combined for nine of their team's 16 shots.
Up next, the Horns square off with No. 2 seed and 23rd-ranked Colorado (11-6-3) in a 2005 Big 12 Soccer Championship semifinal match at the Blossom Athletic Complex on Friday, Nov. 4 at 6:30 p.m. Central.