Texas falls to No. 1 West Virginia after late goal

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Senior defender Isabelle Kerr and the Longhorns look to clinch a berth in the Big 12 tournament with a win over TCU on Friday in Fort Worth.
Photo Credit: Zoe Fu | Daily Texan Staff

The match was there for the taking.

For 78 minutes on Sunday evening at Mike A. Myers Stadium, the Longhorns held their own against No. 1 West Virginia.

But in the 79th minute, West Virginia midfielder Carla Portillo received a ball and fired a rocket from 23 yards out past Texas senior goalkeeper Paige Brown, giving the Mountaineers the only goal in a 1-0 scare.

“[The shot] was well-taken,” head coach Angela Kelly said. “It was a heck of a strike.”

But it was a gut-wrenching end for Texas on its senior night and final home match of the season.

The Longhorns were able to control the match for large stretches, including much of the first half when Texas overwhelmed West Virginia in shots on goal, 6–3. But numerous scoring chances eluded Texas early.

Freshman forward Cyera Hintzen led multiple aggressive attacks, but to no avail.

Junior midfielder Morgan Murphy and senior midfielder Julia Dyche each had chances to score off headers but were unable to capitalize.

In the second half, the two teams continued to go back and forth. Sophomore midfielder Kayra Dollas had a couple chances at goal but was unable to finish. Hintzen had a point-blank shot off of a loose ball in the box, but it was blocked.

Still, the Longhorns didn’t do enough to pull out the win.

“We had chances,” Kelly said. “Their goalkeeper played fantastic. With a team like that, you got to take your chances. You’re not gonna be getting chances all night. Against the No. 1 team in the country, you got to put one of those away.”

Texas (8–8–1, 1–5–1 Big 12) will travel to Fort Worth for its final Big 12 regular season match against TCU on Friday. Texas currently sits in a tie for No. 7 the Big 12 standings. The top eight teams make the conference tournament.

The Longhorns hope to snag a victory over TCU to solidify their spot in the Big 12 tournament.

“I think we just need to come out harder than we ever have and just finish them and put them away,” Hintzen said.