Photo: Ashley Vensel, who had the go-ahead goal in Monday’s 1-0 win over Trinity (Photo by Russell Marwitz/True To The Cru/russellmarwitz.com
SAN ANTONIO- Entering Monday night’s non-conference tilt between UMHB women’s soccer and Trinity (TX), the Crusaders were winless in eight previous matches against the Tigers.
Two and a half hours later, that changed.
In a contest that was delayed for approximately an hour in the first half due to lighting, UMHB prevailed, 1-0, keeping its perfect record intact. The Cru is now 7-0, and has not lost in the regular season since Oct. 23, 2021.
Ashley Vensel gave UMHB the lead in the 21st minute, as the senior midfielder received a pass deep in Trinity territory, with just one Tiger defender to beat. Vensel controlled the ball, stepped to her right, and fired a shot between a pair of Trinity defenders. It got past the hands of Trinity goalkeeper Claire Binns, bounced off the right side of the frame and into the goal, despite Binn’s attempts to keep the ball from crossing the line.
Thanks to a tremendous first half from UMHB’s back line, Trinity tallied six shots, but just one was on goal. That lone shot was saved by Crusader goalkeeper Reagan Williams, moments before Vensel found the back of the net on the other end of the pitch.
The 1-0 lead remained for all 45 minutes of the second half, though Trinity had its opportunities to even the score. The Tigers took 11 corner kicks in the contest, six coming in the second half, though none found their way past Williams, who had six saves for The Cru. Trinity also had seven shots on goal, compared to UMHB’s four.
Trinity’s offensive attack kept the pressure on in the final 10 minutes, looking for a breakthrough opportunity. With under two minutes left, Hanna Khan had the ball in UMHB territory for Trinity, but UMHB’s Kelsey White and Kaitlynn Neill forced it away. Khan took charge once again with less than a minute remaining, but UMHB’s Kennedy Harris overtook possession as the Crusaders sealed the victory.
Trinity has long been a dominant power in Texas D-III Women’s Soccer and within the Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference. In 2022, the Tigers went 21-1-2, reaching the Round of 16 in the NCAA Tournament. Monday’s loss drops Trinity to 2-3-2 overall this season.
- The shutout is UMHB’s fifth of the season, and second in the past week.
- On Friday night in Belton, The Cru blanked Texas Lutheran, 4-0
- The 1-0 win marked just the second time in nine matches between the two programs that UMHB scored on Trinity. It was also the first time that the Crusaders recorded a goal in San Antonio, having been shut out in five previous matches played at Trinity.
- The Crusaders are now 3-0 against Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference programs this season, with previous wins over Southwestern and Texas Lutheran.
- Vensel’s goal was her second of the season, marking her third straight multi-goal season at UMHB.
- Vensel’s last goal in a true road game came at Belhaven on Sept. 17, 2022.
- Vensel is the third Crusader with 2+ goals in 2023, joining Mackenzie Worthy (5), and Jayme Dowell (3).
- Williams’ six saves were the most for the Round Rock native in a single game since her 11-save performance at Hardin-Simmons on Nov. 7, 2021.
- The junior now has a team-high 10 saves this season.
- Williams has now played in seven straight matches dating back to 2022 without allowing a goal.
- Monday’s win marked the 13th 90-minute clean sheet of Williams’ collegiate career.
UMHB opens American Southwest Conference play on Thursday in Belton, hosting ETBU in a 5 p.m. match. The Tigers are 3-0-3 to begin the 2023 campaign.