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UCLA Travels to Oregon State for Top 25 Showdown

Oct 13, 2021
Kennedy Faulknor

No. 7 UCLA (11-0-2, 3-0-2) at No. 24 Oregon State (11-2-0, 3-2-0)
Friday, Oct. 15, 2021 – 4 p.m. PT
Corvallis, Ore. (Paul Lorenz Field at Valley Stadium)

TV Broadcast: Pac-12 Networks
TV Talent: Ann Schatz
Live Stats:

Seventh-ranked UCLA (11-0-2, 3-0-2 in the Pac-12) will travel to Corvallis, Ore. for a Friday, Oct. 15 contest at 4pm against newly-ranked No. 24 Oregon State (11-2-0, 3-2-0). The match will be broadcast live on Pac-12 Network and on the Pac-12 Now app.

UCLA dropped one spot to fourth on the Top Drawer Soccer national rankings and fell four spots to seventh in the United Soccer Coaches poll. The Bruins have been ranked in the Top 10 of the coaches poll in 17 consecutive weeks.

Marley Canales secured a 2-1 victory for UCLA on Sunday afternoon with a golden goal in double overtime against Colorado. The win kept the Bruins unbeaten in 2021 with an 11-0-2 overall record and extended UCLA's unbeaten streak to 20 games. UCLA had taken a 1-0 lead in the 28th minute on Kennedy Faulknor's second goal of the week, but Colorado tied it in the 74th minute. The Bruins nearly went back ahead just three minutes later, but Jayden Perry's shot went off the crossbar. In the second overtime period, Madelyn Desiano nearly ended the game with a shot that pinged off the right post, but two minutes later, she assisted Canales on the game-winner.

Oregon State enters Sunday's game with an 11-2-0 overall and 3-2-0 Pac-12 record and are ranked for the first time since 2012, checking in at No. 24 in the coaches' poll. The Beavers swept the Arizona schools last week, downing the Sun Devils, 2-1, and the Wildcats, 2-0. They also have a victory over Stanford under their belt, beating the Cardinal for the first time ever on the road by a 2-1 score. Oregon State is led offensively by McKenna Martinez, who has six goals and 16 points, and Amber Jackson, who has scored five goals and 13 points. Goalkeeper Bridgette Skiba has a goals against average of 0.90 and ranks third in the conference with 51 saves. Oregon State is 6-0 at home this season.

Senior Kennedy Faulknor had a weekend to remember, scoring the game's first goal in each of the Bruins' two Pac-12 contests. Faulknor, who missed a little over a month with a knee injury suffered in the season opener, recorded her first goal of the season against Utah just four minutes after entering the game. She made an even quicker impact in the overtime win over Colorado, scoring her second goal of the week just two and a half minutes after entering the game. Faulknor played in a season-high 60 minutes against the Utes and had three shots in each game.

Freshman Quincy McMahon has been quite the catalyst during conference play. The defender/midfielder from Carmel, Ind. has recorded four assists in UCLA's last three games, including two in the 4-3 overtime win at Arizona State. McMahon's favorite target as of late has been Kennedy Faulknor, as she assisted on each of Faulknor's two goals last week. The Gatorade State Player of the Year in Indiana ranks second on the team and third in the Pac-12 with six assists.

Senior goalkeeper Lauren Brzykcy is having another fantastic season. The 2020 All-American has allowed just six goals in 1142 minutes and has seven solo shutouts (and one shared) to improve her career solo shutout total to 18, sixth on UCLA's career shutout list. She is also seventh on the UCLA career victories list with 32. Brzykcy ranks second in the Pac-12 and eighth in the nation in shutouts (seven) and is 10th nationally and third in the Pac-12 goals against average (0.473). She is also seventh in the nation in save percentage (0.882). She has earned Pac-12 Goalkeeper of the Week honors twice this season, and in the Bruins' 1-0 win over defending NCAA champion Santa Clara, she tied her career-high with nine saves on 18 shots. She also set up the game-winning goal in that game with a long service that found its way to Madelyn Desiano, who connected with Reilyn Turner for the goal.

UCLA's back line of Madelyn Desiano, Kylie Kerr, Lilly Reale and Brianne Riley entered this season with a total of 18 career starts (all by Riley) and 56 games played, but the inexperience has hardly shown. The back line has contributed to eight shutouts in 13 games and a team goals against average of 0.511 (14th-best in the nation, second in the conference). They have allowed single-digit shots in nine of 13 games and four or less in five games.

The Bruins boast perhaps the most formidable 1-2 punch in the country in forwards Mia Fishel (nine goals) and Reilyn Turner (seven goals). They have totaled 16 goals this season, with Fishel scoring six in her last seven games and Turner scoring six in her last 10, including a hat trick in the Bruins' 3-0 win at LMU on Sept. 5. The dynamic duo have scored 60% (16 of 27) of UCLA's total goals this year.

Redshirt junior defender Madelyn Desiano continues to lead the Pac-12 in assists (eight) and assists per game (0.67). She is nationally-ranked 17th and 13th, respectively, in those categories. The two-time Pac-12 Defender of the Week had a two-assist game in the season opener and recorded an assist in each of the first six games of the year. Desiano has started in 10 games this season, her first career starts after playing in 11 games last season and sitting out all of 2018 and 2019 while recovering from season-ending knee surgeries.

UCLA held an eight-game shutout streak from Aug. 22-Sept. 24. The streak was snapped after 793 minutes on Sept. 30 at Arizona when the Wildcats scored a 52nd minute goal.The streak was UCLA's longest since the 2014 team had a school record-tying 10 in a row from Oct. 13-Nov. 23. Goalkeeper Lauren Brzykcy had her shutout streak snapped at 849 minutes, just 120 minutes shy of Katelyn Rowland's school record of 969 consecutive shutout minutes set in 2014. UCLA has, however, maintained its unbeaten streak, which now stands at 20 consecutive games after the win on Sunday. The Bruins' last loss came at the hands of Arizona State on Mar. 26, 2021.

Bruin seniors Maricarmen Reyes and Idalia Serrano enjoyed mid-season short stints with their respective national teams last month. Reyes scored the game-winning goal in Mexico's 2-0 victory over Colombia on Sept. 21, her first international goal and a little over a week later scored the game-winning goal at Arizona. Serrano was training with El Salvador's national team and started in a 6-0 training game against Santa Tecla FC on Sept. 20.

A quartet of fifth-year players - graduate students Olivia Athens and Marley Canales and fifth-year seniors Lauren Brzykcy and Kennedy Faulknor - are bringing veteran leadership to the Bruins in 2021. Athens is enrolled in UCLA's Master of Legal Studies program, and Canales is enrolled in UCLA's Graduate School of Education, pursuing a master's degree in transformative coaching and leadership. Brzykcy and Faulknor are wrapping up their sociology degrees. The fifth-years have played a combined 255 games for UCLA. Canales and Brzykcy have started all 13 of UCLA's games this season, and Athens has started in 12. Each of the three field players have scored a goal this year.

UCLA returned its top four leading scorers from 2020-21 in Reilyn Turner (11g, 5a, 27pts), Mia Fishel (6g, 6a, 18pts), Marley Canales (4g, 6a, 14pts) and Sunshine Fontes (5g, 3a, 13pts). The foursome combined to score 72% of UCLA's goals last season (26 of 36). Overall, UCLA returned 83% of its goal production and 81% of its points production. Goalkeeper Lauren Brzykcy, who played every minute of every game in 2020, is also back after her All-American season. Eight players who started at least 11 of UCLA's 17 games last season returned - 17-game starters Brzykcy, Canales and Brianne Riley; 16-game starters Fishel and Olivia Athens; 15-game starter Turner; 14-game starter Michaela Rosenbaum; and 11-game starter Kaila Novak.

UCLA's No. 6-ranked recruiting class has been strong contributors to the team this season, with defenders Lilly Reale and Jayden Perry and midfielder Quincy McMahon starting in multiple games. Reale has started in 12 of 13 games, McMahon has five starts and ranks second on the team with six assists, and Perry and Wright each have two starts. Also seeing action this year have been Clara Härdling (four games played) and My Haugland Sørsdahl (three games played). Wright made her season debut at San Diego on Sept. 16 and set up the game-winning goal against the Toreros in her collegiate debut. Emma Egiizi played in the season opener and scored a goal in the exhibition against Pepperdine but is sidelined with a knee injury. Reale and McMahon are ranked in the Top 20 of Top Drawer Soccer's Midseason Top 100 Freshman list, with Reale sitting at No. 3 and McMahon No. 20.

As they have for most of the season, defender Madelyn Desiano is the Pac-12 leader in assists (8) and assists per game (0.67), and forward Mia Fishel is the Pac-12 co-leader with four game-winning goals. The Bruins lead the Pac-12 in W-L-T percentage (0.923) and fouls per game (6.15).

All-Americans Lauren Brzykcy and Mia Fishel were named to the Hermann Trophy Women's Watch List for 2021 and have certainly lived up to the billing, with Bryzkcy ranking in the Top 10 nationally in shutouts (seven), goals against average (0.473) and save percentage (0.882) and Fishel ranking ninth in the nation in game-winning goals (four) and second in the Pac-12 in goals (nine) and third in points (19). Fishel was a second-team All-American in 2020 after tying for the team lead in assists (six) and ranking second on the squad in goals (six) and points (18). She also led the Pac-12 with four game-winning goals. Brzykcy, a third-team All-American, totaled seven shutouts and a 0.73 goals against average while playing every minute of every game. She was named the Pac-12 Goalkeeper of the Year and earned first-team Scholar All-America honors.

UCLA alumnae Jessie Fleming and Sam Mewis are among 20 nominees for the 2021 Women's Ballon d'Or, which honors the best women's soccer player in the world. Fleming had a breakthrough Olympic tournament for Canada, scoring the game-winner against the U.S. in the semifinals and the equalizer against Sweden in the gold medal match. She recently scored her first club goal for Chelsea FC and was named the Player of the Match in the Blues' last league game against Leicester City. Mewis, the 2020 U.S. Soccer Women's Player of the Year, starred with Manchester City in 2020 and 2021 before returning to the North Carolina Courage prior to the Olympics. Mewis, who helped the U.S. win bronze at the Olympics. is the only American player nominated. The winner will be announced on Nov. 29.