BYU slips past San Diego on Nimmer's late goal

(Photo by BYU Photo/Mark Philbrick)
 
PROVO, Utah - En route to their fifth-straight shutout, the No. 20 BYU women’s soccer team topped San Diego behind Marissa Nimmer’s late goal, Friday at South Field. 
 
In the 79th minute, freshman Ashley Hatch’s shot rattled off the crossbar, but Nimmer cleaned up the loose ball, putting it past the Torero keeper into the bottom-right corner of the net for the game’s only goal.
 
 
“This was a big game for us, an important three points for us at this part of the season,” BYU head coach Jennifer Rockwood said. “San Diego’s a great team. They’re very dangerous. We were concerned about their counter attacks, but our defense did a fantastic job of keeping another shutout.”
 
The outcome marks the 21st shutout for BYU goalkeeper Erica Owens and the sixth in the last seven games for the Cougars. The shutout streak is the longest since 2008 and tied for third-longest in school history.
 
The Cougars (12-4-1, 6-1-0) threatened most of the first half, maintaining possession and keeping the ball on their offensive end. They outshot the Toreros (10-8-0, 3-4-0) nine to one. Leading the way were seniors Cloee Colohan with four shots and Colette Jepson Smith with two shots on goal.
 
BYU kept the pressure on with 25 shots to the San Diego’s five in the game.
 
“We challenged our forwards to shoot the ball a little bit more in the second half,” Rockwood said. “Colette got a lot of shots off and obviously Ashley’s shot led to the goal.”
 
The offensive pressure began early in the second half. In the 48th minute, Hatch fired off a shot just outside the penalty box toward the left sidebar which was saved by the Torero keeper Michelle Craft. Other opportunities followed with the Cougars unable to convert until the game winning goal.
 
With the win, BYU keeps pace with Santa Clara and Portland, staying in the hunt for the West Coast Conference title. Only two regular season games remain as the Cougars prepare for another run in the NCAA tournament. 
 
Next up, BYU hosts Pacific on Thursday, Nov. 7 at 7 p.m. MDT. The game will be televised on BYUtv.
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