Second-half strikes send UVU to 2-0 win over Kansas City

WOLVERINEGREENDOTCOM Haley Curtis tallied a goal and an assist in Friday's victory over Kansas City
Haley Curtis tallied a goal and an assist in Friday's victory over Kansas City

Oct. 11, 2013

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OREM, Utah -- Utah Valley University used a pair of second-half goals, just minutes apart, to grab a 2-0 WAC victory over Kansas City at Clyde Field Friday night. Senior Haley Curtis tallied a goal and an assist while Natalie Baker slammed home the game-winner at the hour mark.

Utah Valley (6-7-0, 4-2-0 WAC) and Kansas City (6-7-1, 3-3-0 WAC) entered the final 45 minutes of play deadlocked at 0-0 after a scoreless first half. The opening period saw few chances on goal for either side, though the Kangaroos did have a shot ring the left post early in the match, as the two teams posted nearly identical stat lines. At intermission, UMKC had a slight advantage over UVU in shots at 8-6, but both teams put only four attempts on goal, earned three penalty kicks, and had four saves from their respective keepers.

The Wolverines finally broke the deadlock in the 60th minute in a scoring play that was initiated out of the back by UVU goalkeeper Lauren Sack. Gathering up a loose Kansas City in the box, Sack quickly sent a drop kick beyond midfield and to the waiting head of Curtis. The senior forward nodded the long ball ahead, through the `Roo backline, and right to the feet of a streaking Baker. From there, Baker was one-on-one with UMKC keeper Nina Tzianos and had little trouble finishing with the right foot for the opening strike.

It was Baker's fifth goal of the season and also the fourth assist of Sack's four-year career. The last time Sack had her hand in a UVU goal was Oct. 15, 2011 in a 3-1 win over Houston Baptist in Orem.

Utah Valley 2, Kansas City from WolverineGreen on Vimeo.

Already credited with an assist on Baker's tally, Curtis got into the scoring act herself only three minutes later. From the top of the penalty area, the senior ran on to Kim Stratford's cleverly played through ball towards the near post. With a well-timed slide Curtis fired the ball past the diving Tzianos for her fifth score of the season.

Kansas City tried to crank up the attacking pressure from there, but was unable to break through against a stout defensive effort by the Wolverines' back four and the efficient play of Sack. For the match, Sack finished with six saves but left a mark on the match with her confident decision making, cutting out UMKC crosses, corner kicks, and through passes.

Aside from Sack, the only Wolverine to play the entire 90 minutes was true freshman defender Sara Ranck. Eighteen players saw action for UVU in the match.

UVU wraps up its four-match homestand Sunday when New Mexico State rolls into Clyde Field. It will be the first meeting all-time between the Wolverines and Aggies.