Fishel's Golden Goal Beats Cal, 1-0, Keeps Pac-12 Title Hopes Alive
LOS ANGELES – On a day when she was honored along with the departing senior class, UCLA junior Mia Fishel scored the game-winning goal in double overtime to beat California 1-0 and keep the Bruins' Pac-12 title hopes alive.
Fishel, who announced at the beginning of the season that this would be her last year at UCLA, scored her team-leading 12th goal of the campaign in the 104th minute, sending a low volley off a Brianne Riley cross past California goalkeeper Angelina Anderson and into the back of the net for the game-winner. Fishel has a Pac-12-best six game-winning goals this season and 16 in her career, ranking fifth all-time at UCLA.
The game was a battle of two halves. California had the edge in the first half, outshooting UCLA by a 7-2 clip. The Golden Bears had the first shot on goal of the game in the 22nd minute, a shot by Karlie Lema that was handled by goalkeeper Lauren Brzykcy. They had another good look in the 32nd minute with a banger off the foot of Marleen Rohde, but her shot went over the crossbar.
The Bruin offense came to life in the second half, generating 11 shots, including four on goal. Reilyn Turner and Olivia Athens had shots saved by Anderson in the 58th and 60th minutes, respectively, and in the 74th minute, Marley Canales' curling shot to the upper corner was tipped over the bar. A minute later, Sunshine Fontes' long-distance strike sailed just wide left.
Each team had a prime opportunity to score in the final two minutes. At 88:13, Athens' shot in front of goal was blocked by a California defender and saved by Anderson. And with 19 seconds remaining in regulation, Emma Westin's shot in front of goal soared high above the crossbar.
Neither team recorded a shot in the first overtime, but the tides began to turn early in the second overtime, when the Bruins earned a corner kick in the 103rd minute. Fishel's header was on-target but saved by Anderson. But there was no stopping Fishel a minute later. Jayden Perry started the play by intercepting a clearance by Cal and juking a defender to push the ball forward. She sent a pass over to Riley on the right side, and Riley delivered the perfect cross to Fishel just outside the penalty box for the golden goal.
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Brzykcy earned her ninth shutout and second consecutive for the Bruins, making two saves. Anderson had five saves for the Golden Bears.
The victory improved UCLA's record to 15-0-3 and 7-0-3 in Pac-12 play and set up a head-to-head battle for the Pac-12 title at Wallis Annenberg Stadium on Friday, Nov. 5 at 8pm against conference leader USC. A win by the Bruins will give UCLA its second-straight Pac-12 crown. A win or tie by USC will give the Trojans their first outright conference title.