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WCC Women's Soccer Recaps - 9/29

Sept. 29, 2006

Gonzaga - 1
UCSB - 0

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - Cristin Leverson's third goal of the season lifted the Gonzaga University women's soccer team to a 1-0 victory over UC Santa Barbara Friday night in Santa Barbara, Calif.

Gonzaga improved to 6-4-1 with the win, while the Gauchos dropped to 2-5-3 overall.

Leverson posted the lone goal of the game at the 41:58 mark when she connected on a pass through the box by Christine Soma. The goal was the eighth of Leverson's career, placing her tied for ninth on the all-time career list.

The Bulldog's goalkeeper Jessie Thalman earned her third shutout of the season while posting six saves. Her counterpart, UCSB's Katie Wright, posted two saves in the loss. In her rookie season, Thalman is now tied for third in the GU all-time career shutouts rankings.

The Zags earned the victory despite being out shot by the Gauchos, 17-7. UC Santa Barbara also held the corner kick advantage, 10-1.

Gonzaga will return to the pitch Sunday to face fifth-ranked UCLA in their final match before the start of West Coast Conference play. The match will be played at Drake Stadium on UCLA's campus in Los Angeles and will begin at Noon.

SCHEDULE NOTE: The Oct. 1 match versus No. 5 UCLA will be played on UCLA's campus in Los Angeles. Some 2006 Gonzaga University women's soccer schedules may incorrectly indicate the location of the match. The match will be held at Drake Stadium at Noon on Oct. 1. The match will mark the first meeting between the two programs. The Bruins are currently ranked fifth in the national polls.

Portland - 5
Washington - 0

PORTLAND, Ore. - The Portland Pilots proved they could score without their top scorer and defend without their best defender Friday evening, routing Pacific Northwest rival Washington 5-0 at the Clive Charles Soccer Complex. With All-Americans Megan Rapinoe and Stephanie Lopez away with the U.S Women's National Team, the Pilots put forth one of their best team efforts of the season in front of a sellout crowd of 4,892.

Rapinoe entered the week tied for the national lead in goals scored with 10, while Lopez was a unanimous first team All-America defender a year ago. Portland proved to be just fine without the duo on Friday as freshman Michelle Enyeart led the attack with two goals and an assist. Fellow freshman striker Kendra Chandhoke added two second half goals off the bench.

Portland (8-2-1) scored three first half goals in a six-minute span to gain control early and cruise to the victory. The Pilots improve to 17-2-1 all-time against the Huskies (5-6-0).

"It was a beautiful game," said Portland head coach Garrett Smith. "I think our players looked at it as a challenge, playing without Megan and Stephanie. We played with a sense of urgency and came out firing. Five goals on 14 shots is very efficient and shows focus."

The victory was the fifth straight for the Pilots, all by way of shutout. Portland has outscored opponents 31-1 over the last eight games.

Enyeart put the Pilots on top in the 11th minute, beating UW goalkeeper Kelsey Rasmussen to a through ball sent from junior Rachael Rapinoe. Enyeart tapped a touch around the oncoming keeper towards the endline in the left of the penalty box and then patiently finished across the goal mouth to the ride side.

Enyeart struck again in the 16th minute on a nice passing sequence in the midfield. Junior All-American Angie Woznuk laid a perfect lead pass down the right flank to freshman Megan Sweeney. Sweeney's cross found Enyeart just outside the goal box at the near post. Her side-volley finish beat Rasmussen to the low right. Enyeart now has eight goals and three assists this season.

Junior defender Kelli Cronkrite made it 3-0 with a memorable strike. Normally a center back, Cronkrite filled in for Lopez at left back and found some space across midfield. She took a touch and unleashed a 35-yard bullet on a line to the low right. The goal was her first of the season and second of her career.

"Kelli played a phenomenal game in an unfamiliar position," Smith said.

"I just cut the ball back inside and let it ride," Cronkrite said of her strike. "I could tell right away that I hit it well."

Chandhoke finished a nice slot pass from Enyeart in the 52nd minute, blasting her attempt from the right side into the left netting for a 4-0 lead. She struck again in the 71st minute on a long pass from Cronkrite, beating Rasmussen and tapping in from five yards to the open net.

Portland controlled possession from start to finish and outshot the visiting Huskies by a 14-5 margin.

The Pilots will return to Merlo Field at the Clive Charles Soccer Complex on Sunday for a 2 p.m. match against the Oregon Ducks.

Utah - 2
Pepperdine - 0

Malibu, Calif. - The No. 20 Pepperdine women's soccer team fell to No. 23 Utah, 2-0, on Friday evening at Ute Field in Salt Lake City, Utah. The Utes improved to 7-4-0, while the Waves fell to 6-3-2 on the season.

With a scoreless tie in the second period, both teams battled to be the first on board. After back-to-back corner kicks by both teams, Utah struck first at the 61:15 mark as Amanda Feigt scored from eight yards out. The home team continued to attack and added another score at the 78:32 mark to take a two-goal lead on the visiting Waves.

After taking three quick shots and a corner kick, the Utes set the pace in the first few minutes of the match. The Waves would see Utah take two more shots before getting back in the game offensively with defender Ashley Copp and midfielder McKenzie Hill making attempts.

Pepperdine would see another scoring opportunity minutes later when forward Lindsey Redlin took a corner kick and found midfielder Lauren Treinen, whose shot fell wide as she attempted to get the Waves on board before the first 45 minutes ended.

Pepperdine goalkeeper Kayla Stolte equaled her career-high seven saves in the match.

The Waves shift their focus to Sunday's 1 p.m. match against UNLV at Peter Johann Memorial Field in Las Vegas, Nev.

New Mexico - 3
Saint Mary's - 1

Albuquerque, NM - In the opening round of the New Mexico Tournament, the Saint Mary's women's soccer team suffered a 3-1 loss to the University of New Mexico from the UNM Soccer Complex on Friday night.

The game between SMC and New Mexico got off to a quick start, as both teams scored a goal in the first three minutes of the match. The Lobos scored first when Alanna Abeyta headed in a cross from Krista Peterson from 15 yards out just 1:55 into the game.

SMC's Nikki Schrey answered 34 seconds later with her third goal of the season to even the score at 1-1. Schrey's goal was a one-timer off a cross from McKenna Belzer, who dished out her team leading third assist of the year.

Following the goal by Schrey, New Mexico answered in the 29th minute when Bridgette Sanchez's shot from 35 yards out floated over the head of SMC goalkeeper Tara Larson. After leading 2-1 at halftime, UNM extended its lead to 3-1 in the 81st minute when Hannah Hand finished a long pass into the box from Amber Wetsch.

New Mexico's goalkeeper Shannon Adragna earned the win after making just one save against eight shots by the Gaels. The Lobos held the advantage in shots, taking 15 against the Gaels' defense. The combination of Larson and Jessica Zenovich tallied three saves for Saint Mary's, which fell to 1-7-2 overall on the year.

The Gaels will complete the New Mexico Tournament on Sunday against Northern Arizona with kickoff scheduled for noon.

UCLA - 3
San Diego - 0

LOS ANGELES, Calif. - The University of San Diego women's soccer team (7-4-0) fell to the fifth-ranked UCLA Bruins (8-2-0), 3-0, Friday evening in a non-conference match at Drake Stadium.

The two teams were engaged in a defensive battle for the first 30 minute of the match, until UCLA was able to break into the scoring column. In the 31st minute, Lauren Cheney tallied her sixth goal of the season as she took a shot from eight yards out to beat USDs starting goalkeeper Brittany Cameron.

Cheney would then add to the lead for UCLA two minutes later with her second goal of the match, and the final UCLA goal came in the 36th minute of the match when Christina DiMartino took a shot from the left side of the goal box that snuck past Cameron to put the match at its final of 3-0.

The Bruins out shot the Toreros 23-4, but USD had a 5-2 advantage in corner kicks.

Natalie Vinti, Tara Hodgson, Ashley Kirk and Vanessa Vella all tallied one shot apiece for the Toreros.

Cameron was charged with the loss for the Toreros allowing three goals, while recording six saves. Her counterpart, Valarie Henderson, was credited with the win for the Bruins allowing no goals and recording two saves.

The Toreros will return to the pitch on Sunday at 5 p.m. as they host the Rainbow Wahine of the University of Hawaii in a non-conference match at Torero Stadium.