SEATTLE -- Washington (6-5-2, 2-0-2 Pac-12) continued its great play in conference, earning a 1-0 win over Utah (6-6-1, 2-1-1 Pac-12) on Friday night at the Husky Soccer Stadium. Havana McElvaine scored a sensational goal as the Dawgs stayed unbeaten in Pac-12 play.
“That was a big game for us,” said head coach Lesle Gallimore. “Crazy things are happening in our conference and that keeps us in the thick of it.”
Washington moved over .500 for the first time this season with the win, but more importantly stayed unbeaten in conference. Washington’s 2-0-2 record in the Pac-12 puts the Dawgs squarely in the conference race.
McElvaine’s goal won Friday night’s game after Washington was unable to convert the majority of the game’s chances. After going to the half scoreless, McElvaine scored the game’s only goal in the 55th minute on a blast from 35 yards. Isabel Farrell swung in a corner kick that Utah cleared. The freshman defender then ran onto the ball rolling out and hit a screamer into the upper corner.
It was the first goal of McElvaine’s career on just her second shot of the season. The goal came at the right time for the Dawgs who had been frustrated by not scoring on some good chances.
“Havana scored a great goal,” said Gallimore. “She can strike a ball from distance, in fact I have seen her score almost that exact same goal in practice.”
Washington outshot Utah for the game, 15-10, but most of Utah’s chances came in desperation time in the final minutes. Lindsay Elston was particularly dangerous up top, taking seven shots, including four on goal. In all, the Dawgs forced Utah goalkeeper Lindsey Like into eight saves.
The Utes did not have many chances, but nearly had a goal midway through the second half. However, Megan Kufeld came up with a brilliant save, diving to her left. Kufeld made one other tough save late in the half to earn her third-straight shutout and sixth of the season. The redshirt sophomore has really come into her own in conference play and now has a scoreless streak of 315 minutes.
The defense in front of Kufeld has also been stout with seniors Molly Boyd and Lindsey Bos anchoring the line along with Allyson Brahs and McElvaine who have stepped forward after some early-season injuries.
Next up for the Dawgs will be Colorado on Sunday back at the Husky Soccer Field for a noon kickoff. The Buffaloes lost to Washington State on Friday night in Pullman to drop to 10-3-0, but were receiving votes in the latest NSCAA poll. A win Sunday would put UW in great position in the conference standings as only California and UCLA remain unbeaten like UW, but the California schools play each other on Sunday.