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BYU Soccer shuts out Louisville to advance to Sweet 16

Dominant second half takes Cougars past Cardinals

BYU Photo

BYU women’s soccer put on a second half clinic to beat Louisville 4-0 at South Field in Provo on Thursday evening.

The Cougars came into the match on the back of their 5-1 first round win over Boise State, but struggled to break down the Cardinals in the first half. BYU nearly had costly giveaways in their defensive third a number of times and didn’t look comfortable in the first 45 minutes.

Something must have happened at halftime in the BYU locker room, and from the opening whistle of the second half, the Cougars came out focused and much sharper than in the first half. They created several chances, but it wasn’t until the 62nd minute that they would find their opener. Elise Flake ran onto a Cameron Tucker through ball and slotted it past Louisville goalkeeper Gabrielle Kouzelos to give BYU a 1-0 win.

It’s often said that the next five minutes after an important moment in a match will determine the outcome, and that was no different here. Just a minute later in the 63rd minute, Flake got to the end line in the penalty area and slotted a pass back to Mikayla Colohan who finished into the net to give the Cougars a 2-0 lead.

BYU goalkeeper Sabrina Davis then had to make a spectacular save at the other end, before a swift counter-attack from the Cougars led to Rachel Lyman’s cross being flicked into the net by Tucker in the 68th minute.

BYU would snag one more on a late penalty in the 82nd minute. Colohan coolly stepped up and slotted it to the right side of the goal as Kouzelos dove the opposite direction.

BYU is now 20-0-1 on the season and are in the Sweet 16. The win gives BYU their first 20-win season since 2012. They will play North Carolina State (12-6-4) on Saturday night at South Field, after the Wolfpack defeated 3-seed Arkansas in Provo in the afternoon game on Thursday.