No. 4 UCLA Catches USC In Overtime
Oct. 15, 2006
LOS ANGELES, CALIF. - The No. 19 USC women's soccer team took No. 4 UCLA into overtime for the third straight year, but were edged out once again by the Bruins during golden-goal action. UCLA struck its game-winner in the 98th minute of play to post a 2-1 victory over the Trojans on Sunday afternoon at McAlister Field. The game marked USC's third consecutive overtime match, while the decision pushed the Trojans to a 7-3-3 overall record and a 0-1-2 Pac-10 mark. UCLA moves to 12-2-0, 3-0-0 with the win.
The Women of Troy did a solid job of possessing the ball during the game, generating several early strikes against UCLA goalkeeper Valerie Henderson. Ashley Nick served a ball up to Lauren Brown in the eighth minute for a good look on goal, but Brown's shot went just wide. Less than a minute later, Amy Rodriguez took a booming shot on goal, but that, too, was just off the mark. Meanwhile, the Trojan defense kept the UCLA offense well contained. Lindsay Parker made a sliding clear on the ball with UCLA's Danesha Adams bearing down on charging USC goalkeeper Veronica Simonton. Stacey Strong also turned away another Bruin attack, and then Simonton came up big with her first save of the game when she made a diving stop on a shot drilled in by McCall Zerboni that had deflected off a USC defender. Janessa Currier was just an inch away from a dangerous header on a crossing pass from Tracy Lansing in the 38th minute of play, but by the time the halftime horn sounded the game remained scoreless.
The intensity of the match continued to rise during the second half. UCLA garnered nine shots in the half, and USC sent in five during the period. UCLA got deep in Trojan territory in the 65th minute and was called offsides, but three minutes later the Bruins generated a successful strike. Christina DiMartino drilled a shot that was stuffed by Janessa Currier. The rebound rolled wide and was picked up by Danesha Adams, who slipped the ball back into the box for Lauren Cheney to finish off for a 1-0 UCLA lead at 68:06. But the USC scoring threat that had been quiet through its first two Pac-10 games was ready to respond to the Bruins' challenge. Nine minutes later, Rosa Anna Tantillo sailed in a free kick that went through a pack of players and to the waiting feet of Ashley Nick. Nick rocketed in a crosscage shot from 25 yards out to lock the teams even at 1-1 in the 78th minute of play. A ferocious final 12 minutes of regulation gave way to yet another overtime battle for USC.
The Trojans got off two shots during the first overtime, but with just two minutes to go in that period, UCLA's Bristyn Davis served a ball in from the right side. Stacy Lindstrom met the pass with a header that smacked the underside of the crossbar and went in for the game-winning goal for the Bruins.
USC returns to action this weekend with a trip to Arizona. The Trojans first face Arizona State at 7 p.m. on Friday (Oct. 20), and then play at Arizona at 1 p.m. on Sunday (Oct. 22.)
UCLA 2, USC 1 (OT)
UCLA 0 - 1 - 1 --- 2
USC 0 - 1 - 0 --- 1
SAVES: Veronica Simonton (USC) 5, Valerie Henderson (UCLA) 4.