Official newspaper of The University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

Official newspaper of The University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

Official newspaper of The University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

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October 4, 2022

Texas soccer advances to the second round of the NCAA Tournament with 2-0 win over Lamar

Skyler Sharp
Midfielder Lexi Missimo plays against West Virginia University on Sept. 28, 2023.

No. 5 Texas soccer made it to the second round of the NCAA Championship for the second consecutive year after beating Lamar 2-0 in its tournament opener.

Junior midfielder Lexi Missimo opened the scoreboard at the 20th minute by converting a penalty kick. Missimo, who has yet to miss a goal from the spot, now has 25 goals on the year.

“Lexi Missimo was the hardest outfield player,” Texas head coach Angela Kelly said. “That’s just a credit to her.”

The Texas offense dominated the first 45 minutes and a great part of the half was played in Lamar’s box, where graduate student goalkeeper Nicole Panis had ten saves throughout the game.

Panis set the scene early in the game when she denied junior midfielder Jilly Shimkin’s second minute bottom right shot on goal.

“You always want that feeling of the ball in the back of the net,” Kelly said. “(Their) keeper came up huge in the first half.”

Trinity Byars had two back-to-back shots saved by Panis in the 21st minute and a total of six shots before finding the back of the net at the 42 minute mark with an assist from sophomore defender Breana Thompson. 

“She’s a prolific goal scorer,” Kelly said about Byars. “Anytime she receives the ball the opposition has to have two (or) three people ready.”

Byars’s historic 47th career goal made her the program’s all time top scorer, previously held by Dr. Kelly McDonald Freeman.

“When I committed here, I came in hoping to break records,” Byars said. “It’s a great achievement.”

Lamar’s offense fought harder as the second half started, giving Texas’ junior goalkeeper Mia Justus a harder time. 

“I don’t believe we win that game without Mia Justus,” Kelly said. 

After a total of three shots in the first half, the Cardinals already had seven in the first 20 minutes of the second. Despite 13 full-time shots and six shots on goal, Justus and the Texas defense maintained a clean sheet.

“We locked in that’s for sure,” Justus said. “Naturally when you’re down you try to go a little bit more direct. We knew that going into the second half, we were prepared.”

Kelly credited Justus for the win and described the two goal scorers as generational.

“They’re doing it right and they’re doing it in fashion,” Kelly said. “I’m so excited I’m not the coach to organize play against them.”

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