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Soccer slips in California against Cal Poly

After achieving a much-needed 2-1 victory on Friday night against the University of California at Santa Barbara, the Arizona soccer team took a step backward Sunday after a lackluster performance against Cal Poly ended in a 3-0 loss.


In a game where the Wildcats were supposed to build upon their Friday night win, they instead reverted back to their old ways.


""This was definitely a step backward. We felt good about what we did Friday, but we just didn't play up to our capabilities today,"" said Arizona head coach Dan Tobias. ""We're all disappointed with this game, but all we can do is put this game behind us; that's 90 minutes we can't get back.""


Arizona, which fell to 3-6-1, struggled from the onset as they allowed Cal Poly to connect early in the first half on a goal by Mustang forward Tiffany Gummow in the fifth minute. Cal Poly again scored in the 25th minute with a header by Julianne Grinstead off a corner kick.


The Wildcats outshot the Mustangs 7-to-3 in the first half but were unable to convert on scoring opportunities. As a result, they trailed 2-0 at halftime.


""I thought we had a lot of chances to score but we made a few errors and they turned those errors into goals for them,"" Tobias said. ""We had possession of the ball throughout the game but we just didn't tuck away any chances.""


The Mustangs had just upset No. 7 California 1-0 in overtime on Friday night and carried the momentum from that game against the Wildcats on Sunday.


""They just took it to us,"" forward Renae Cuellar said. ""They were fired up after beating California on Friday and I think we came in taking them a little too lightly.""


In the second half, nothing changed for the Wildcats. They continued to outshoot the Mustangs 9-to-6, but their scoring struggles continued.


Arizona's best chance to score came when Cal Poly committed a foul just outside the penalty box. A free kick taken by Arizona midfielder Leila Amini missed wide right.


""I don't think we're creating enough opportunities to put ourselves in position to score,"" Cuellar said. ""We should be able to create twice as many chances to score and be able to put them away as well.""


Despite the loss on Sunday, the Wildcats were able to come up with one positive over the weekend. Led by sophomores Cuellar and Jessica Culver, Arizona's win over UCSB gave Culver the first goal of her college career.


Arizona now turns its attention on its final non-conference game against Loyola Marymount University on Friday at Mulcahy Stadium in Tucson.


""We need to forget about this and be ready for a good training session on Tuesday,"" Tobias said. ""We haven't played our best 90 minutes yet this season, but we expect to play our best against Loyola Marymount on Friday.""

 


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