A late goal by sophomore defender Jenna Thomas was the only sign of life that the Massachusetts women’s soccer team showed in its 3-1 loss to George Mason.
The road loss drops the Minutewomen below .500 to 6-7-2, 3-3-1 in the Atlantic 10.
The Patriots would negate Thomas’ goal in the 71st minute, when freshman midfielder/forward Kayla Hamric scored her second goal of the season from 18-feet out from the net.
“I mean it was a tough battle, George Mason is a good team,” coach Ed Matz said. “They have a five-game winning streak at home. It was a game against a very good team.”
George Mason (7-8-1, 4-2-1 A-10) got on the board early, when junior midfielder Rebecca Callison scored the first goal of the game in the fourth minute from 15 feet out. The goal was Callison’s fourth goal of the year.
Thirteen minutes later, Patriots’ redshirt sophomore forward Daniela Neves scored her second goal of the season on a shot from midfield.
“They came down the field and they scored an early goal,” Matz said. “Right away we tried to come back and gave up another goal. You give yourselves a 2-0 deficit that early you start trying to get it back. We kept shooting ourselves in the foot.
“We were giving them too much room in the beginning of the game and they came at us,” Matz said of the difference maker. “I don’t know why the players started doing it [in the second half]. When we started it second half, we decided to be more aggressive. We decided we can’t wait 45 minutes to play good defense when we’re down 2-0.”
Matz said that when UMass was on defense they let the players turn around and get too many opportunities off the rush.
Despite allowing nine goals in their last two games, UMass is still taking it one game at a time.
“We’re still taking it one game at at time, but the games don’t get any easier,” Matz said. “We’re trying to win, but we’re not worrying about Saint Louis when we play Duquesne on Sunday.”
The Minutewomen face the Dukes Sunday in Pittsburgh who currently sits in second place with a 6-1 record in the A-10 and 10-3-2 overall.
“Duquesne’s very good, one of the top teams in conference,” Matz said. “They beat George Mason, but we’re taking it one game at a time. Saint Louis might be the best though.”
After Duquesne, the Minutewomen face off against the Billikens on the road, Thursday, Oct. 19. Following that they close out the regular season against Dayton on Oct. 22 at home.
Zander Manning can be reached at [email protected] and followed on Twitter @ZMSportsReport.