Omaha falls late to foe Denver

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Photo by OMavs

Jack Hoover
CONTRIBUTOR

If you looked at any stat besides the final score, you might assume that the Omaha Women’s Soccer team beat Oral Roberts with ease.

At the end of the game on Friday night, the Mavericks outshot the Golden Eagles 13-5. The Oral Roberts keeper was forced into making five saves, while the Omaha keepers had zero. The possession advantage throughout the game seemed to be clearly in the Maverick’s favor.

Yet the final score, the one stat that counts, went a different way.

The Mavericks fell 0-3 to Oral Roberts on the road, a game in which the Golden Eagles were incredibly accurate in front of goal. Of the five shots they took, three were on target, and all three of those found the back netting.

Omaha, for being the primary aggressor throughout the game, was unfortunate to come away without a goal.

With the loss, the Mavericks are now 1-4 in the Summit League and since their win against Fort Wayne, have lost their last four games.

One problem that has caused issues for Omaha in those last four games, and throughout much of the season, has been the lack of a true goal scorer.

At times in the season, the team has displayed exceptional goalie play, stout defending from the backline, good buildup in the midfield and dangerous play from the wings. The lack of an effective finisher is what has proven to be costly.

Of the 15 games played this season, the Mavericks have been shut out of 9 of those. When the team has gotten goals, they’ve mostly been hard fought finishes, typically off the end of a set play or a well-placed through ball.

Even at times, as displayed against Oral Roberts, the team has been able to rack up most of the shots this season. Yet without finishing, and with the opposition being lucky enough to finish the few chances they get, the final scores can look much worse than how the game played out.

This lack of scoring has caused the Mavericks to slip out of the top four in the Summit League standings and as such, a possible trip to the postseason tournament. With only two games left in the season, the Mavericks can’t afford any more slipups if they wish to have a chance to make the tournament.

Omaha closes out the season at home against Western Illinois and against South Dakota, both at home. To make the postseason, the Mavericks would need to win those two games and count on the current fourth-place team Denver to lose their remaining two.

Being at home has been beneficial to Omaha this season, so being able to grind out a result in the final two games and potentially seeing the postseason is still well on the table.

One thing the team has never failed to display this season is a strong fighting spirit. Regardless of how Denver does in their games, the Mavericks will surely be fighting to finish high in the league, especially after having placed near the bottom over the past several years.

With a chance to finish the season at home, coupled with their will to always fight, they just might get the finish they deserve.

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