Sept. 29, 2012
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. - The No. 23 UAB men's soccer team fell to SMU, 1-0, in its Conference USA opener on Saturday night at West Campus Field. The Blazers outshot the Mustangs, 21-10, for the night, including a 12-2 shots-on-goal advantage, but could not find a way to break the SMU defense.
"The stat sheet tells the story of tonight," UAB head coach Mike Getman said. "They made 12 saves, including two off the line, and our keeper makes one save. I thought our guys played extremely well all night. We did enough to win the match except score a goal and you have to find ways to do that in order to win."
The lone goal of the game was scored on a penalty kick at the 59:29 mark by SMU's Andrew Morales.
Despite going down 1-0 with just over 30 minutes remaining, the Blazers never gave up and created a number of solid scoring chances. However, SMU goalkeeper Jaime Ibarra was up for the challenge, as he made 10 saves en route to a clean sheet.
The Blazers had two excellent chances in the final two minutes of regulation, both coming off corner kicks. The first came on a Chase Wickham corner kick that was flicked past Ibarra by defender Mladen Lemez. But an SMU defender was there to get a head on it and just pop it over the goal to keep the Blazers off the scoreboard.
On the ensuing corner, with the final seconds ticking away, it was Moses Adeniran who got his head on the ball and directed a header which appeared to be headed into the top corner of the net. But again, a Mustang defender was in the right spot and knocked the ball out of danger as the buzzer sounded.
"Soccer can be a cruel game," Getman said. "You can win every statistical category and outshoot a team, 21-10, but sometimes the ball just doesn't want to go in the goal. I thought we stayed with our game plan and did well. There is nothing we should change for our next game."
The Blazers will have a week off before returning to league play, when they travel to Miami, Fla. to take on the FIU Panthers on Saturday, Oct. 6, at 6 p.m. CT (7 p.m. ET)