Canyon, Texas – The St. Mary’s University women’s soccer team will return home around 2:30 Monday morning, knowing its three-game road trip could not have gone much better.
Two victories preceded Sunday’s 2-2, double-overtime tie against West Texas A&M, a team that entered as the 19th-ranked team in the country.
Seniors Carolina Hernandez (El Paso, Texas) and Melinda Gentry (Plano, Texas) both scored in the match, which ended in a draw after 110 minutes.
“Just to be able to have a winning record on the road right now is a big thing for us,” coach Corwyn Ritch said. “Going 2-0-1 in these last three games as we go into conference is the biggest swing for us.”
The Rattlers (3-4-1) jumped to a quick 1-0 lead when Hernandez found the back of the net in the opening minute. Amanda Cardoza (Fr., El Paso, Texas) had drawn the goalkeeper out of the net on the play, allowing Hernandez to sneak in the goal.
West Texas A&M’s Kendal Kitchens evened the score on a header in the 19th minute, but the Rattlers regained the lead on Gentry’s goal in the 42nd minute. Gentry’s goal came on a free kick from about 15 yards out following a West Texas A&M foul.
But just as it looked like the Rattlers would walk away with a victory over the nation’s 19th-ranked team, West Texas A&M’s Melanie Shannon struck to tie the game 20 minutes into the second half.
“Honestly, over the past three games we played two undefeated teams and beat both of them,” Ritch said, “and we played the 19th-ranked team in the country to a tie. Two wins and a tie, not bad for a three-game road trip.”
St. Mary’s is back home Wednesday, when it will host Texas A&M International University at 3 p.m. at the St. Mary’s Soccer Field.