The Washington women’s soccer team started its season off hot. Maybe hot would be an understatement.
The Huskies came out of the gates this season scorching, starting 7-0, including a 3-0 win over 2010 national champion Notre Dame.
But since tying Utah State on Sept. 13, the Huskies have chilled quickly, and after this weekend, the UW’s steady chill may have even entered deep-freeze territory.
The Huskies (9-6-2, 2-5-1 Pac-12) dropped two critical conference matches this weekend in the Bay Area, losing to No. 25 California, 2-1 Friday and then getting blanked by No. 2 Stanford, 3-0 Sunday. The Huskies have gone 2-6-2 since their unbeaten start and haven’t had a multi-goal game since beating the Fighting Irish.
The defending national champion Cardinal got on the board quickly with a Courtney Verloo penalty kick in the seventh minute. From there, Stanford didn’t look back. More goals came through in the 22nd minute when Verloo knocked in a corner kick to put the Cardinal up 2-0 and in the 87th minute when Stanford allowed an own goal.
“I thought we played well and the goals that put us behind [were] really unfortunate,” head coach Lesle Gallimore told GoHuskies.com. “You can’t let a team as good as Stanford be spotted two goals. Our team fought and we are proud of them.”
In the 73rd minute, the Huskies made a change in goal, subbing out senior Kari Davidson, who is one of the Pac-12’s leaders in saves, with the redshirt freshman Megan Kufeld. Kufeld made four saves in almost 18 minutes of play while Davidson was unable to record a save against the Cardinal.
Against Cal, the Huskies fell in a hole early, allowing a goal in the 31st minute to Cal’s Betsy Hassett who headed in an Ariana Martinez assist. The UW’s Jaclyn Softli was able to even the score soon after in the 33rd minute when she took advantage of a bobbled save from the Cal keeper. The Bears put the game out of reach in the 51st minute when Hassett headed in her second goal of the game off a free kick to clinch the win for the Bears.
Now, with only three games left in the season, the Huskies are looking to heat back up with the postseason right around the corner. Next up will be Oregon in a Thursday-night tilt this week at 7 p.m., at Husky Soccer Field.
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