UNLV Rebels met the Seattle Redhawks Tuesday morning for the first round in the WAC Tournament. Even though the Rebels controlled the ball for the majority of the game, the Redhawks managed to put more shots in the net to take home the win.
Once again, the Rebels took an early lead. Jesus Patrida took a penalty kick in the box, tricking Akili Kasim with a shot to the bottom left corner of the net to make it 1-0.
UNLV didn’t hold that lead for very long. Seattle bounced back with a goal of their own less than two minutes later. Hal Udertiz booted the ball into the back of the net for the Redhawks, tying the game at 1-1.
"We were good in possession, which I think was their game-plan, to allow us to keep the ball in their half. I think we had plenty of chances to score in the second half,” Head Coach Rich Ryerson said. “We got to convert and we had chances on the far post a couple of times to do so and we just weren’t able to.”
Despite going into halftime with a tied score, the Rebels outshot the Redhawks 9-2. They continued to outshoot Seattle in the second half, finishing the game with 19-9 shots. Kasim saved eight shots for Seattle, while Miguel Duenas Jr. only made two saves for UNLV.
"We got caught a couple of times with too many numbers forward in the counter-attack which led us to man-to-man situations and defending,” Coach Ryerson said. “That piece exposed us to the counter-attack, I think.”
The Redhawks officially took the lead at 54:03, when Munie Hussen managed to slip another one into the net. With 12 minutes left in the half, James Morris secured the Seattle win with a third goal.
This loss ends UNLV’s season with a 3-2-1 record at home, 4-5-2 overall. Mason Reid is the only Rebel graduating on the team, meaning everyone else will return shortly to improve for the upcoming fall season.
"We are going to try and continue the defensive efforts we’ve had this year,” Coach Ryerson said, “and really try to find someone that can score for us.”
Team Captain Billy Jones and Bailey Letherman received second-team all-conference honors, while Duenas Jr. and Gabriel Caludio were Honorable Mention All-WAC. Meanwhile, Louis Hiepen was selected to the WAC All-Freshman Squad.