UH goes for Arizona trip sweep

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FINAL — Hawaii 2, Grand Canyon 1. Sonest Furtado has the first multi-goal game for a UH player this season as the Wahine (5-4) take their third straight road game to close nonconference play. First three-game road winning streak for the program since beating UCSB, USC and LMU in succession, all by 2-1 scores, in a five-day stretch in Sept. of 2004.

85th minute, Hawaii 2, Grand Canyon 1 — Furtado strikes again from a similar spot as her first goal about 12 yards out shaded left, this time with some open space thanks to a nice pass ahead from Kellsie Gleason. Team-best fourth goal of the season for Sonest, matching her output of her freshman season.

72nd minute, Hawaii 1, Grand Canyon 1 — Well, you can put that one on me. GCU lofts a cross over one player but Anyssa De Vera gets the assist to Amanda Lopez at close range.

70th minute, Hawaii 1, Grand Canyon 0 — Mata is putting in work again. She’s up to five saves. Wahine need 20 more minutes of that for a third straight road shutout win.

61st minute, Hawaii 1, Grand Canyon 0 — Sarah Lau breaks upfield and crosses it into the box for Sonest Furtado, who puts on a reverse move to freeze the defense and dinks the ball far post past the keeper. Third goal of the season for Furtado and 10th career.

HALFTIME, Hawaii 0, Grand Canyon 0 — Shot count stands at 12-9 in favor of the Wahine. Strom-Okimoto peppering the Lopes’ goal with five shots.

45th minute, Hawaii 0, Grand Canyon 0 — Lex Mata with an outstanding diving save on a GCU cross and one-timed hit to keep it scoreless just before halftime.

38th minute, Hawaii 0, Grand Canyon 0 — Raisa Strom-Okimoto has a DEEP shot that caroms off the top of the crossbar.

12th minute, Hawaii 0, Grand Canyon 0 — Rainbow Wahine are dominating possession in the early going. They’re confident coming off that big win at Arizona State. Kiri Dale is into the starting lineup for center back Cristina Drossos.

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The Hawaii soccer team looks to stay hot on the road in today’s nonconference finale at Grand Canyon in Phoenix, Ariz.

UH (4-4) vs. GCU (3-5-1) of the WAC kicks off at 1 p.m. HST. You should be able to watch it here.

The Rainbow Wahine shrugged off temperatures in the 90s in Friday night’s 1-0 overtime win at Arizona State, courtesy of Raisa Strom-Okimoto’s breakaway winner in the 96th minute. It was the junior’s team-best third goal of the season and 10th career.

Courtesy of UH, here was Strom-Okimoto’s winner off a perfect chip pass assist from Sonest Furtado.

Today’s daytime matchup is expected to be more of the same, heat-wise.

“(It’s) going to be a scorcher,” coach Michele Nagamine said in a phone interview.

The Wahine go for their first two-game road trip sweep since momentous wins at Oregon and Oregon State in 2013. Going back to the this season’s previous three-game trip that concluded at Idaho State (a 2-0 win), Friday’s contest was UH’s second straight shutout of a road opponent. The last time the Wahine did that was Big West games at UC Davis and at Long Beach State, also in 2013. (That’s actually UH’s Big West-opening trip next week.)

Junior goalkeeper Lex Mata, the reigning Big West defensive player of the week, has been on it lately, recording eight saves in each of the road shutouts.

“I think the team is hungry,” Nagamine said. “I think they’re here to prove that (Friday) wasn’t a fluke.”

UH out-possessed the Sun Devils (2-4-1) much of the game, though the shot count was nearly identical at 20-19 UH. As you’d expect, both teams had some missed scoring chances throughout, including a close one by Strom-Okimoto at the end of regulation. She had eight shots and Furtado six.

“We were pretty methodical in our preparation for the road trip,” Nagamine said. “It was actually nice to see us put together two complete halves, and also apply the things we worked on in training. We had a pressing session in our last session right before we got on the airplane. They really did a good job of that, and I think we took (ASU) out of their game a little bit. That worked really well, I was really happy with that.”

When it got to overtime, Nagamine said she told her team, “OK, I know I asked you to finish two complete halves, but I can please ask just a little bit more? … You know guys, we’re a damn good overtime team, so let’s just stick to what we do. We’ve been successful in two overtime games this season. This is not the day anybody’s going to take anything from you.”

UH lost center back Cristina Drossos to an ankle injury about 10 minutes into the game and she didn’t return. However, she trained with the team on Saturday, Nagamine said. It’s possible she will play today.

With the victory, UH improved to 6-32-1 all-time against the Pac-12.

Interestingly, the Wahine have fared better against that Power Five conference on the road than at home. They are now 5-14 on the road in those games. Here are the all-time road wins over Pac-12 teams (note: old road wins over Pac-12 newcomers Colorado and Utah do not count here):

>> Nov. 5, 1994 at USC, 2-0
>> Sept. 3, 2004 at USC, 2-1
>> Sept. 6, 2013 at Oregon, 1-0
>> Sept. 8, 2013 at Oregon State, 1-0
>> Sept. 15, 2017 at Arizona State, 1-0 OT

The one home win? A 1998 decision over Oregon, 2-1. There was also a 1-1 home draw against the Ducks to open 2016.

Nagamine noted the success discrepancy is in part because UH tends to play middle- to lower-tier Pac-12 teams on the road, and often brings in top-tier teams like Stanford and UCLA at home.

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