No. 15 USC Women's Soccer Falls on the Road at Purdue
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – In front of a record-setting crowd at Purdue's Folk Field the No. 15 USC women's soccer team struggled to get its footing in a 3-0 season-opening loss to the Boilermakers on Thursday night.
In front of 3,217 fans, the Trojans came out strong early, controlling the tempo and outshooting the home team, but a late first-half goal stole the early lead for Purdue. The Boilermakers' confidence only grew in the second half as they were able to send home two more goals and keep USC off the board for the shutout victory.
With four likely starters still set to return from the U-20 World Cup, USC had four players make their first start in a Trojan uniform today and used just three substitutes in the game. USC still managed a 17-11 shot advantage, putting six balls on target in the game.
44' – PUR: Naomi Splitorff (assisted by Kayla Budish, Abigail Roy) – Roy sent a pass toward the top of the area, where Budish knocked it towards a charging Splitorff, who knocked it into the upper left corner on one touch.
59' – PUR: Gracie Dunaway (assisted by Kayla Budish, Emily Mathews) – Mathews made a run up the left side and centered a pass to Budish, who slid it to her right for a wide-open Dunaway and she shot it into the left side netting.
71' – PUR: Gracie Dunaway (assisted by Sydney Duarte, Riley Knudsen) – Knudsen sent a cross into the box that was headed by Duarte and after hitting a Trojan defender, Dunaway knocked it home from point-blank range.
The Trojans return to Southern California for a matchup with Long Beach State on Sunday. That 7 p.m. game can be seen on the Long Beach State live stream, with links to follow available on the women's soccer schedule page at USCTrojans.com.