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Montana soccer falls to Portland

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Posted at 12:00 PM, Aug 23, 2021

(Editor's note: University of Montana media release)

MISSOULA -- The Montana soccer team dropped a 1-0 decision to Portland on Sunday afternoon as the Grizzlies made their home debut at South Campus Stadium in Missoula.

Nedya Sawan’s goal in the 56th minute from just outside the 18-yard box proved to be the game-winner in a mostly balanced and evenly played game.

It was the second one-goal loss of the opening week of the season for Montana (0-2-0), which fell 2-1 in double overtime on Thursday night at Creighton.

“We lost to Creighton with 46 seconds left in overtime, then 1-0 to Portland on a soft goal. Both games we were in and both games we were creating opportunities,” said Griz coach Chris Citowicki in a media release. “I like how competitive we are and how we possess the ball well against good teams and the way we’re creating opportunities and defending. We just need that final thing, which is to score goals.”

Neither team scored in the opening half, though Portland had the better chances with the dangerous Taryn Ries, who is skilled, long and fast, up top.

Montana would outshoot Portland in the second half, but it was the Pilots who opened the scoring at 55:14.

Sawan took a throw-in on the left side with her back to goal, spun and sent a long, looping shot that got over the outstretched hands of Griz goalkeeper Elizabeth Todd.

Portland, which outshot Utah 13-6 on Thursday, finished with a 12-11 advantage in shots. Montana had three corner kicks to the Pilots’ two and owned a slim advantage in time of possession (51 percent to 49 percent).

Montana will face Cal Poly (0-2-0) on Thursday at 8 p.m. (MT) in San Luis Obispo, Calif. The Mustangs opened the season with a 2-0 loss to Stanford on Thursday and a 2-1 setback to Saint Mary’s on Sunday.