UH soccer WACked


POSTED: Monday, October 05, 2009

Hawaii soccer coach Pinsoom Tenzing's biggest worry entering Western Athletic Conference play has come true.

He warned last week that his main concern was falling into an early hole and spending the rest of the season playing catch-up.

But that's exactly the situation the Rainbow Wahine find themselves in after dropping their second straight WAC home game, this time to Fresno State 1-0 last night at Waipio Peninsula Soccer Stadium.

Hawaii (4-8-1, 0-2) is tied with Louisiana Tech, a program that has never won a WAC match in 30 tries, at the bottom of the standings. The Wahine play four of their final six league games on the road, where wins are already tough to come by.

“;This really puts us in danger of not even getting to the WAC tournament,”; Tenzing said. “;Exactly what I spoke about is coming to pass. It's a difficult situation.”;

UH hasn't missed out on the tournament since 2000 and has only finished under .500 once in conference play since then.

“;Luck is just not going with us I guess,”; junior midfielder Mari Punzal said. “;I feel like we're dominating most of the game, but I think when we don't put away the easy goals it discourages us a little.”;

Hawaii outshot its opponents again, but not with the same dominance it has in previous games. UH had a 13-10 advantage in shots, but shots on goal were about the same, with UH taking six to FSU's five.

“;Chasing a game in the second half we're not very good at,”; Tenzing said. “;Everything fell apart.”;

The Bulldogs scored the game's only goal in the 38th minute. FSU's Nicole Duff controlled the ball without any pressure from UH's defense and sent an easy crossing pass into the box. Laura Dodd was credited with the goal after the ball bounced off a UH defender and into the net.

“;There was several mistakes made on that play,”; Tenzing said. “;That was a complete, complete breakdown by our defense.”;

UH's last major scoring chance came with less than 4 minutes left. A crossing pass snuck through the box and made it to freshman Skye Shimabukuro on the back side. She had a one-on-one look against Bulldogs goalkeeper Chrissy Smith but pushed her shot wide left of the goal as UH again came up empty.

“;It's very frustrating, especially when you work really hard,”; Punzal said. “;Now we're at the bottom of the bucket, so we're going to have to step up and we have to hope for other teams to fall too if we want to be at the top.”;

After a week off to play its alumnae game, Hawaii hits the road for games at LaTech and New Mexico State on Oct. 16 and 18.