[ RAINBOW WAHINE SOCCER ]
GEORGE F. LEE / GLEE@STARBULLETIN.COM
Hawaii's Natasha Kai controlled the ball and prepared to unload during last night's game.
Lui gives BYU
edge over UH
Charlene Lui couldn't have picked a better time to find the net for Brigham Young.
With the clock running down in the second overtime period of a 0-0 tie, the 5-foot-2 midfielder got a loose ball 35 yards from the goal, turned and launched an arching, left-footed shot that cleared the hands of UH goalkeeper Kori Lu and dropped in under the crossbar.
There were 33 seconds left from the third consecutive tie between the Hawaii Rainbow Wahine and BYU in the last three seasons.
The victory gave the Cougars (2-0) the title in the OHANA Hotels & Resorts No Ka Oi tournament before 470 fans at the Waipio Peninsula Soccer Park Stadium last night.
"I got the ball and said 'Here goes' ", said Lui, a Punahou graduate who was down after Saturday's match, saying she had played horrible.
"It was really surreal. UH is a very good team and we knew they would come out and battle us hard. They always put up a good fight, but I just had a feeling that something was going to happen in overtime. I just didn't know it would be me.
"You can't ask for a better ending on this field."
It was the first overtime loss for the Wahine in the last 15 matches that have gone past 90 minutes. Their last OT defeat was at Rice in 2001.
"I'm not as upset with the goal as I am with the mistake we made just before that. Our plan was to counterattack and we were playing around with the ball down there (defensive end)," said UH coach Pinsoom Tenzing.
"It was a patchwork job. I'm happy the kids played as long as they did and didn't concede a goal. Our defense covered well, but we were not aggressive enough going for the ball."
The Wahine did not have the services of starting midfielders Gabina Bohlman and Jessica Domingo. Both have knee injuries and their status will be better known this week.
"They (the Cougars) were better in the air, more aggressive in the air and you have to be that way to play Division I soccer. Having said that, I thought we competed well for all but 30 seconds."
The Cougars created the first scoring opportunity when Carolyn Swenson broke clear on the left side only to have Lu dive and redirect the ball out of bounds with a stab of her right hand.
BYU had two corner kicks in the 23rd minute, but the UH defense held.
Koren Takeyama put a ball through to Natasha Kai for a solo run from just inside the midfield line at 24:21, but BYU goalkeeper Erika Woodbury came off the line and duplicated Lu's effort with a one-handed save.
Five minutes later, Katie Larkin started working her way through the UH defense from the left corner and ended up with a shot from 5 yards that Lu batted away.
The Cougars controlled most of the first half, moving the ball from side to side with efficient passes and generating enough chances to outshoot the Wahine 7-3.
BYU applied offensive pressure for the first 15 minutes of the second half, forcing several corner kicks, but could not put the ball between the pipes.
The Cougars' Bobbi Tillotson was wide right 28 seconds into the half. Jamie Rendich Beck sent a left-footer over the top at 47:25 and was just wide right at 69:17 from close range.
Swenson received a perfect cross from the right side at 74:56 but misfired on a shot from 5 yards out.
Through regulation time, the Cougars held a 19-5 shot advantage.
Both teams had chances in the first overtime.
Aimee Cohen broke free on a chip over the BYU defense from Krisha Kai but had her left-foot attempt grabbed by Woodbury at 98:20.
Moments later, Larkin beat Tehane Higa down the right side, cut in, but had her shot blocked across the goalmouth by Lu. The UH goalkeeper had to keep scrambling, pushing the loose ball out of trouble twice as teammates and Cougars tried to gain possession.