September 14, 2013

Lady Slugs' 4-Game Road Winning Streak Snapped at La Verne

LA VERNE, CA -- UCSC's eighth game in fourteen days looked to be off to a strong start at University of La Verne this past Saturday evening under the lights. At the 11:56 minute mark, high pressure play on La Verne's defense resulted in a throw-in for UCSC deep in the La Verne defensive third. Junior captain #19 Alexis Dracker performed her flip throw, senior #10 Justine Dougherty flicked it backwards into the 6 yard box and onto freshman #29 Megan Carey who beat her defender and flicked the ball away. It was Carey's 4th goal of the season, bringing her up to share the points leader position with fellow teammate junior #4 Sarah Sadler with 8 points a piece. 
However this early result would not stand. UCSC would go into the half tied 1-1 after La Verne's #8 Jaime Weaver was able to capitalize on an uncleared ball which La Verne sent back in behind UCSC's back line which her teammate #23 Alexa Smith was able to place back across the 6 yard box and onto the foot of Weaver who tucked it away.
In the second half, UCSC enjoyed several spells of possession, but couldn't muster up the finishing touch as seven shots failed to find the back of the net. One low and driven free kick attempt by senior captain midfielder #22 Chay Thomas was keenly smothered by La Verne's goalkeeper #1 Delanie Pacheco, who saved all shots on goal but the set piece in the first half.  
La Verne's high pressure and counter attack play would continue and with less than ten minutes left to play at the 81:19 minute mark, La Verne's #14 Megan Hodgson's shot found its way into the side netting and UCSC found themselves down 2-1. 
Scrambling to convert, UCSC missed the mark and couldn't find their way back on the board despite registering 11 shots to La Verne's 5 and garnering 5 corner kicks to La Verne's 1. The Slugs met the heartbreaking end to their 4-game road winning streak. They look to regroup as they fly out to Texas this Wednesday to take on three west region opponents, including nationally ranked #16 Hardin Simmons who is #3 in the west region according to the current NSCAA polls. HSU has produced convincing results versus other competitive SCIAC opponents, so UCSC will have their work cut out for them and look forward to the challenge. UCSC is currently #8 in the NSCAA west region poll which come out weekly every Tuesday afternoon.