Trojans Shut Out No. 9 Santa Clara
Sept. 27, 2009
SANTA CLARA, CALIF. - The USC women's soccer team added an exclamation point to its win streak with a solid 2-0 shutout of No. 9 host Santa Clara on Sunday afternoon. Playing in their fourth straight road match, the Women of Troy pinned up their third shutout of that stretch and also added their sixth consecutive victory to their 2009 tally. Chelsea Buehning's first career goal marked the game-winner for the Trojans, who improve to 7-3-0 overall with the win. The No. 9 Broncos go to 8-3-0 with the loss.
Riding a six-match win streak until getting tripped up by the Trojans, Santa Clara opened the match winning out on the possession game, although USC would adjust and solidify its midfield for a stronger opposition to the Broncos' gameplan. After a scoreless first half of play in which Santa Clara out-shot USC 7-2, the Women of Troy upped their attack early in the second half. Pushing hard against the Bronco back line, the USC strikers dropped the ball back for support. Sophomore defender Chelsea Buenhing met the ball near the left sideline and launched a roaring left-footing shot from about 25 yards out to the top right post and in. Buehning's first career goal put USC up 1-0 and changed the landscape of the game as USC fought hard to preserve its lead and maintain control in the game.
Later in the half, the teams would trade yellow cards, as Karter Haug was tagged with a yellow for delay of game and Santa Clara earned one after a takedown of Samantha Johnson. Marihelen Tomer forced a diving save out of Broncos goalkeeper Bianca Henninger with a hard-driven header on goal after that USC free kick.
USC made defense a priority for the duration of the second half to stymie good looks on goal for Santa Clara. With a stubborn defensive line deflecting shots and making key clears, Olsen also nabbed a few more impressive saves to hold tight to that shutout. The senior goalkeeper would finish with eight saves to match her career high, and improves her career solo shutouts mark to 23 with her third of this season, putting her two shutouts away from USC's all-time best count.
Time waned as the Broncos pressed on, eager to equalize, until USC got a clear and a counterattack to transition downfield. Ashley Freyer got deep again, and the Broncos knocked the ball back out. Alyssa Dávila gathered in the ball, however, and blasted a shot through to further dash any Bronco hopes of a comeback.
Dávila's fourth goal of the year pinned today's second USC goal on the board with less than a minute left on the clock, locking up USC's sixth straight win. The 2-0 victory is USC's second in four games over a ranked opponent and first of the season over a top-10 team. USCC's winning road run began with a 1-0 upset of #21 Oklahoma State on Sept. 18.
USC now returns home for its final nonconference match, as the Trojans host San Diego at 3 p.m. on Friday (Oct. 2).
USC 2, #9 Santa Clara 0
USC 0 - 2 = 2
SCU 0 - 0 = 0
SAVES: Kristin Olsen (USC) 8, Bianca Henninger (SCU) 3.
SHOTS: USC 20, SCU 8
CORNER KICKS: USC 8, SCU 2