September 6, 2010

UC Santa Cruz Southern California Game Report

September 6, 2010
UC Santa Cruz Southern California Game Report

SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA,--The UC Santa Cruz took to the road this past week in their first away outings of the 2010 season. The road proved rocky as the squad fell to 0-3 on the season. The first defeat came at the hands of Cal Baptist University on the Lancer's home turf. Cal Baptist is currently ranked No. 8 nationally in NAIA. In consistent form, #10 All-GSAC and NAIA All-American midfielder Fabiola Zanella da Silva was able to tally 2 goals against the Banana Slugs in the first half, getting on the board early in the game.  Santa Cruz got out to a rough start, unable to produce many chances or shots on goal. Cal Baptist's set pieces on corners proved deadly as well, with the Lancers putting in one header in the first half and forcing an own goal by the slugs in the second half to make the final score 0-5.

Picking their heads up from this first heated and smoggy Riverside encounter, the Slugs took to the field at Pomona Pitzer versus their first DIII opponent of the season and were still kept at bay 0-1. This battle proved a much more even-match up; however, the Slugs still couldn't get on the board. Attacking midfielder sophomore Brooke Attkinson had the most definitive chance of the first half, rocketing a shot that managed amazingly to glance off the crossbar, bounce down back down into the box, and then back over the crossbar and out of bounds.  Aubrey Mapes and Ritz Hernandez also tried their shots at goal, but sent chances over the top of the cross-bar and wide. The game was a better effort for the slugs to get the wingers down the line.

Sunday afternoon saw the match-up between the Slugs and DIII playoff rival CMS. The weather had cooled a bit and the Cruz squad looked to improve their efforts. This hope was a bit dashed in the first half when Laura Hagen of the Athenas was awarded a PK and converted. The Lady Slugs answered back immediately however, and Jessica Scolaro headed home a ball sent from Roxanne Beltran from the left side of the park. This was a very heads up play that renewed the Cruzians confidence on the pitch and on the ball.  A defensive lapse left Lizzie Van Buskirk open in the middle of the park with one minute to go. She converted and left the Slugs 1-2 at the half. The contest continued to be a competitive battle, but ultimately the CMS squad put in the two other opportunities they had, making the final score 1-4 in the Athenas favor. The Slugs were able to improve their opportunites in the goal box with shots coming from defensive midfielders captain Ritz Hernandez, junior Adriana Moosekian, and freshman standout Gloria Hernandez.  Forwards Aubrey Mapes and "T" Esposo also unleashed shots. This third game put an end to the Slugs southern California road trip but not their spirits. Head Coach Josh Schelhorse in his second year at the helm of the program had this to say after the results: "Though these obviously aren't the results we wanted out of these games, we are a young squad and we are working to improve with every game. We know what we need to work on and we are ready to make those adjustments and continue to grow with each game." The Slug players and coaches eagerly await the return to the pitch of key player, senior and captain Erica Wheeler-Dubin and freshman Anna Campbell who were both sidelined due to injuries in preseason games. The Cruz Women's Soccer Squad will take to the road again towards the Northwest this week as they head into games with Puget Sound, 9/10 at 2:30 pm and Withworth, 9/12 at 9:30am.