The McPherson College women’s soccer team faced a tough road trip this past weekend, going 0-2 against some very stiff competition.

The McPherson College women’s soccer team faced a tough road trip this past weekend, going 0-2 against some very stiff competition.  
The Bulldogs fell 1-0 to No. 9 Nationally ranked University of Texas-Brownsville Saturday and then lost 1-0 to Northwood University Monday.
Saturday afternoon was a big day for the young McPherson College women's soccer team. The Bulldogs knew this was going to be a difficult team to match up with and were ready for the battle.
Both teams created good opportunities but failed to put the first points on the board. The closest opportunity McPherson had was about five minutes from halftime when freshman forward Cydney Lewis was able to be her defender and go to goal one-on-one with the keeper.
Unfortunately, the keeper was able to make the save diving to her left and both teams entered halftime deadlocked at 0-0.
In the second half, UT-Brownsville came out with a different game plan and it worked to their advantage.
They were able to stretch the McPherson midfield and back line enough to fire off a few solid shots. UT-Brownsville was awarded a penalty kick around the middle of the second half after a pass through the box inadvertently hit senior Samantha Peterson's hand.
Freshman Caitlyn Blagrave was put to the test facing their Portuguese National team player, Monica Mendes, from the spot and Blagrave was successful  in preserving the scoreless tie after diving to her right and stopping UTB.
Four minutes later the Ocelots were finally able to hit the back of the net off of a poorly defended corner kick to take a 1-0 lead. Three minutes later the Bulldogs would once again get stuck in their defensive third allowing UT-Brownsville to put away the final goal of the contest.
"My coaching staff and I are very pleased with the ladies’ performance today," head coach Robert Talley said. "To be able to play the No. 9 team in the Nation straight up, create goal scoring opportunities and not concede a goal until twenty minutes left in the match is pretty solid for our first official game of the season."
Monday's game against host Northwood University could be best described as rainy, sloppy and very physical.
  Both teams entered the match knowing this was going to be a battle.  McPherson was not prepared for the physical style of play administered by the knights.
By the end of the first half, the Bulldogs had four different players visited by the trainer on the field for injuries, one of which was unable to return the rest of the game.
The Knights were able to put the loan goal on the board against McPherson back-up goalkeeper Makenzie Smith half way through the first half.
The Bulldogs had a great chance to tie the game in the last 10 minutes when forward Jessica Dominguez  had a breakaway from 30 yards out. Unfortunately the goalkeeper was able to get her foot on it at the last second deflecting it away and preserving the 1-0 win for the Knights.
"I wasn't upset by the physical style of play Northwood demonstrated against us today,” Talley said. “The only way our girls will be able to prepare themselves for the top level teams is by playing physical games once in a while. I was more concerned about players from both teams getting severely injured. Northwood is a very good team and a great test for us to see where we are at this point in the season."
A pair of home matches await the Lady Bulldogs as they host Briar Cliff University on Saturday and Morningside College on Sunday.
Both contests are scheduled for a 1:00 p.m. start on the practice fields of McPherson College.