Soccer team double dips at home

By By Natalie Dicou and By Natalie Dicou

By Natalie Dicou

Just when Idaho State seemed poised to avenge its loss to the U women’s soccer team in last year’s NCAA tournament, the Bengals found themselves reliving the nightmare that’s been haunting them since November.

Just like in the tournament match on Nov. 9, 2006, the Utes trailed Idaho State 2-1 Friday but tied the game on a controversial goal in the final minutes to force overtime.

And just like in the tournament, the Utes found the back of the net in overtime and stole a 3-2 win.

Idaho State coach Allison Gibson thought the Utes’ tying goal was offside and was issued a red card after arguing with the referee.

The heavy dose of dj vu was probably too much for the coach.

The Utes got on the board first when Adele Letro scored in the 21st minute, but the Bengals answered with a goal of their own five minutes later.

Despite out-shooting Idaho State 11-2 in the second half, the Utes fell behind with 16 minutes to go.

But the Utes put pressure on Idaho State, and their never-say-die attitude paid off when Katy Reineke scored the equalizer with 1:50 remaining.

The Utes dominated overtime, never giving the Bengals much of a chance.

Seven minutes into sudden-death, Amanda Sanchez launched a long pass into Lauren Hair, who tapped the ball to a wide-open Letro standing in front of the net.

“We had a rough start to the season being on the road, and I think this will provide us with something positive to build on,” coach Rich Manning said.

On Sunday, the Utes kept their home record perfect after handing Oregon a 2-0 defeat.

Kelly Isleib dictated the play from midfield as usual. The Utes’ game plan hinges on her ability to skillfully transition the ball up the field.

“Kelly’s a special player,” Manning said. “She gives everybody confidence. If she has the ball, she’s going to make a good decision.”

Utah took a one-goal edge when Isleib directed a long free kick toward Oregon’s goal. Letro had a few chances to finish it off, but her attempts ricocheted off the defenders. Kiley Jones was there for the rebound and booted it past Oregon’s defense in the 22nd minute.

Erin Dalley put Oregon in a deeper hole in the 59th minute when the freshman scored her first collegiate goal from 10 yards out off a pass from Isleib. Overcome with emotion, Dalley dropped to her knees.

“I’ve been waiting for a long time to score,” Dalley said. “I’ve struggled with scoring lately. A weight has been lifted.”

Dalley’s goal put the match out of reach, and the Utes earned a convincing win over a Pac-10 opponent.

“It’s certainly nice to get a shutout,” Manning said. “We’ve given up nine goals in our last three games.”

The Utes will try to make it three straight victories when they challenge Cal Poly on Thursday at 7:30 p.m.

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Liz Rohde

Lauren Hair races down Ute Field in Sunday’s 2-0 victory against Oregon.