No. 12 USC Suffers Rare Loss At McAlister Field
Aug. 30, 2009
LOS ANGELES - The No. 12 USC women's soccer team was dealt a rare loss on its home McAlister Field on Sunday afternoon, as St. John's came to Troy and managed a game-winner in the 77th minute to hand a 2-1 loss to the Women of Troy in nonconference play. The Trojans manufactured a pile of scoring opportunities with tough shots on frame, but the only offensive series to produce a goal came on a USC corner kick where a St. John's player was issued a red card on a foul. That set up Megan Ohai for a penalty kick, and the junior drilled it to get USC on the board. The 2-1 loss moved USC's early-season overall record to 0-2, while St. John's improves to 2-0 with today's decision.
The Trojans were able to put a lot of pressure on the Red Storm defense throughout the game, as many good looks on goal were just barely off the mark. USC gathered up 23 shots in the game, with St. John's taking six. On an early USC attack, Ohai pushed the ball to Marihelen Tomer, who crossed to a charging Alyssa Dávila. Dávila got a good head on the ball, but the shot went wide. All of a sudden, St. John's twisted momentum in its favor with an aggressive counterattack. The Red Storm set up for a corner kick and found their tallest player on the field for a header and quick goal in the 39th minute to lift St. John's ahead 1-0 for halftime.
USC turned up its pressure again in the second half, generating a series of shots on goal. Carly Butcher drove a booming shot that hit the crossbar. Ohai was near for a header on the rebound, but St. John's goalkeeper Kristin Russell got a hand on the ball to tip it safely over. Two minutes later, USC was still in Red Storm territory and was lined up for another corner kick. Courtney Garcia booted this one and Marihelen Tomer slammed a header that went wide but stayed in bounds. Ohai was there for a shot that also went wide just as the referee blew the whistle to charge a St. John's player with a red card within the penalty box. That put USC in line for the equalizer in the 54th minute, and Ohai calmly set up for the penalty kick and blasted it in to make it 1-1 in the second half.
The Trojans continued to buzz around the goal, creating several more shots including another Butcher blast that hit the post. Just when momentum looked to be rolling toward a USC go-ahead goal, St. John's took the ball the other direction. A Red Storm centering pass found Raelynne Lee at the right post and she knocked it through to push St. John's back into the lead, up 1-0 in the 77th minute of play. USC pushed hard for another equalizer, but could not get to the back of the net before the final horn. The loss left USC with its first defeat at McAlister Field since 2006, as the Trojans had held a 19-game unbeaten streak at McAlister entering today's 2009 home opener.
USC's next competition takes the Trojans to San Diego for two games. USC will first face Cal State Fullerton in a 5 p.m. match on Friday (Sept. 4), and then will take on Ohio State at 11 a.m. on Sunday (Sept. 6). Both games will be played at the University of San Diego.
St. John's 2, #12 USC 1
USC 0 - 1 = 1
SJT 1 - 1 = 2
38:21 - STJ: Vaila Barsley (Courtney Lane)
53:52 - USC: Megan Ohai (penalty kick)
76:13 - STJ: Raelynne Lee (Courtney Curby)
SAVES: Kristin Olsen (USC) 2, Kristin Russell (STJ) 6
SHOTS: USC 23, STJ 6
CORNER KICKS: USC 8, STJ 1
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