Ashley Nick's Overtime Header Sets Record For USC
Nov. 18, 2007
COLUMBIA, MO. - The second-seeded USC women's soccer team set some records on Sunday, earning its first-ever trip to the NCAA Third Round with a 1-0 win in double overtime over host Missouri. The victory runs the Trojans' overall record to 16-3-2, tying USC's program record for wins. USC had been knocked out of the postseason in the second round six times, including the past two seasons, until today. Junior midfielder Ashley Nick delivered the winning strike for the Trojans, driving a diving header off a long flip throw-in from Megan Ohai in the 104th minute of play to get USC the history-making victory in sudden death. Missouri ends its season with a 13-7-1 overall record.
USC now advances to the NCAA Third Round against Florida, which advanced on penalty kicks over Central Florida. The location and date of USC's NCAA Third Round match is yet to be determined.
Regulation play was largely even. Missouri generated five shots in the first half to USC's three, but the Trojans picked up their pressure in the second half. The Tigers had several breaks on goal that were either snuffed by Kristin Olsen or knocked clear by the USC back line - anchored by Kasey Johnson, Janessa Currier, Stacey Strong and Karter Haug. In the 75th minute, Missouri's Alysha Bonnick had Olsen pulled out high and got past her, but her shot on an open net went wide to keep the game scoreless. USC made its move next, with Ashli Sandoval helping generate pressure out of the midfield for the Women of Troy. With just over seven minutes remaining in regulation, Sandoval got a good look and blasted a shot on goal that Missouri goalkeeper Mallory Forst barely got a touch on to knock the ball off the crossbar. The rest of regulation passed, and the teams set up for the first sudden-death overtime.
The Women of Troy came out ready for the next stretch. Janessa Currier, Amy Rodriguez, Megan Ohai and Marihelen Tomer all took stabs at the cage but couldn't break through. Meanwhile, the Trojans defense turned away a pair of Missouri shots, as Karter Haug tracked down a dangerous Tiger centering pass and Olsen came up with a save on a nearpost try with time draining in the first overtime.
In the second overtime, Currier blocked an early Tiger shot attempt to keep USC on track. Four minutes later, the Trojans got deep in Missouri territory once more, gaining a throw-in from the right sideline. Megan Ohai stepped back to take the throw, launching a the ball off a flip into the box. The ball just passed over Kasey Johnson on the near post, and Ashley Nick was in position to finish it off. Nick drove a header straight in for the game-winning goal - the first of her USC career - extending the Trojans' season and tallying a record-tying win total for Ali Khosroshahin's 2007 USC squad.
USC 1, Missouri 0 (2OT)
MU 0 - 0 -- 0 - 0 -- 0
USC 0 - 0 -- 0 - 1 -- 1
SAVES: Kristin Olsen (USC) 3, Mallory Forst (MU) 4.
SHOTS: USC 18, MU 12.
CORNER KICKS: USC 5, MU 5.
- USC now holds a 7-8 all-time record in the NCAA Tournament in nine appearances.
- With 16 wins, USC ties the most season wins in program history, last achieved in 1997.
- Ashley Nick's goal today was the junior's first career game-winning goal.
- USC has outscored opponents 41-12 this season.
- The Trojans hold 12 shutouts this season.