Cowgirl soccer silences Wolves

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By Dave Kavanaugh

Andrea Duke found the back of the net in the 70th minute Wednesday night, lifting New Mexico Highlands past Colorado State-Pueblo 1-0 in Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference women’s soccer.

The Cowgirls, who improved to 3-0-2, dominated the Perkins Stadium pitch much of the evening. They kept the action largely on the CSUP side with 26 shots, including 10 on goal.

Crystal Schuder had four of those shots on goal; Duke had three.

That pressure finally caught up to ThunderWolves goalkeeper Savannah Thompson, a preseason All-RMAC honoree.

Thompson recorded nine saves, including a pretty vertical leaper late in the scoreless first half. But with Corey Ventura Hubbert making the assist, Duke booted the game winner from 25 yards out at the 72:15 mark.

NMHU goalkeeper Nikita Rivera faced far less pressure. She went the full 90 minutes and didn’t have to stop any shots on goal.

Going into Wednesday night’s home match with Colorado State-Pueblo, the Cowgirls had scored wins over Central Washington and St. Mary’s and ties against Angelo State and West Texas A&M.

CSUP entered Wednesday’s contest 3-0, having outscored foes a combined 4-1. It was their best start since 2004, when the Wolves won their first five matches.

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Earlier in the week, Highlands shut out St. Mary’s 3-0 on the neutral ground in Golden, Colo.

A failed clear attempt by St. Mary’s (Texas) goalkeeper Alyssa Taramona led to a point-blank score by Brooke D’Onofrio less than three minutes into Sunday’s match. It was D’Onofrio’s second goal of the fall for NMHU.

But St. Mary’s and Taramona kept the Cowgirls out for the remainder of the half and the first 15 minutes of the second.

That’s when Alyssa Saucedo’s assist set up a Nicole Millar goal from 30 yards out.

A hard-charging Crystal Schuder capped the scoring by running up the right side and beating Taramona one on one for a goal in the 72nd minute.

Rivera went the full 90 minutes for Highlands and made two saves.

To Taramona’s credit, she had seven stops for St. Mary’s (2-2-1).

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Caitlin Diefendorf scored twice for the Robertson girls in a 2-1 win over Pojoaque Valley on Wednesday afternoon at RHS field. The Lady Cards are 6-3.

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The Cardinal boys shut out Questa on Sept. 11 for their first win. They lost 2-0 to Pojoaque on Wednesday. They’re slated to host Goddard on Saturday after the girls host Socorro.