No. 5 USC Serves Up 3-0 Shutout Of LMU
Sept. 26, 2008
LOS ANGELES, CALIF. -- The No. 5 USC women's soccer team plugged in its sixth consecutive win this afternoon, posting a 3-0 win over visiting Loyola Marymount at McAlister Field. The victory marked the Trojans' fourth shutout of the year and set a new program record for an unbeaten home stretch, as USC has remained undefeated at home for 15 straight games. It was another powerful offensive outing as well by the Women of Troy, who have scored no fewer than three goals in the past five games. USC is now 8-1-0 overall, while Loyola Marymount moves to 4-4-2.
Already boasting more goals in this opening stretch of the 2008 season than scored in three separate seasons all-time, the Trojans ballooned their offensive stats further today against the Lions. Megan Ohai dished out the match-winner in the 27th minute of play, and Carly Butcher blasted the next in the 37th. Finishing off the day's scoring was Amy Rodriguez, who struck in the 87th minute to make some leaps on the USC all-time charts. Rodriguez tallied her 25th career goal with the score, moving up to tie at No. 4 all-time at USC. The senior's career points count also improved to 66 to hold her alone at No. 5 all-time. On the defensive end, goalkeeper Kristin Olsen came away with the solo shutout, notching the junior's 14th career shutout to pull her even at No. 3 all-time at Troy. Rodriguez and Ashli Sandoval are now locked at No. 5 in career assists with 16 each after Sandoval's assist on today's third goal.
Now with 28 goals scored in USC's nine games so far this season, the Trojans have matched scoring totals from the 2003 and 2004 seasons and bettered marks set in 1993, 2001 and 2002.
Loyola Marymount opened the game with the bulk of the early offensive looks, getting deep into Trojan territory for a pair of early corner kick opportunities. The USC defense stiffened, however, and pushed back to help the Women of Troy get on the attack. USC forced seven saves out of LMU keeper Alyssa Clark in the first half, but the Trojans broke through in the 27th minute to get on the board. Stacey Strong got deep on the LMU defense and served her cross into the box, where Megan Ohai flicked a header to the back of the net for the sophomore's third goal of the year.
Ten minutes later, Alyssa Dávila got on the loose on the right side and slanted on the attack, slipping a pass to Carly Butcher, who booted in the shot to get USC ahead 2-0. Her goal bumps the freshman up to stand as one of four Trojans with four goals scored this season.
In the second half, USC kept pressure on the LMU back line, getting 10 more shots. Thanks to stubborn defense by the Trojans and a pair of saves from Olsen, USC minimized the Lions' shot opportunities. The Trojans had a chance to make it 3-0 earlier in the second half when Nini Loucks took on LMU keeper Clark, forcing a great save out of Clark as she pushed Loucks' shot just wide. With just over three minutes left in the game, however, USC got that third goal. Ashli Sandoval delivered the ball in from the right, sending a pass for Ohai outside the box. Ohai passed up the shot, setting up the ball for Amy Rodriguez, who slammed in the shot with the outside of her foot to pull USC ahead 3-0.
USC's home stand continues next week with two more games at McAlister Field. The Trojans will host Cal State San Bernardino at 3 p.m. on Thursday (Oct. 2) and then face Cal State Northridge at 1 p.m. on Sunday (Oct. 5) to round out nonconference play.
#5 USC 3, Loyola Marymount 0
LMU 0 - 0 -- 0
USC 2 - 1 -- 3
SAVES: Kristin Olsen (USC) 4, Alyssa Clark (LMU) 10.
SHOTS: USC 24, LMU 8
CORNER KICKS: USC 6, LMU 4