Pac-12 Recap: Non-conference slate wrapped
The non-conference season is complete, and the Pac-12 displayed its dominance by posting a 76-14-9 record, the best winning percentage (.813) in the country.
Here is a recap of last weekend’s action and a look at the standings.
USC’s winning streak snapped
USC could not hang on to a 2-0 halftime lead in Waco, Texas, as Baylor became the first team to draw the Trojans this season.
The Bears knocked in a rebound in the 56th minute, then netted a cross just five minutes later to spoil a first half that USC completely dominated.
For Eisenhart, it was her first collegiate goal. Hocking pulled into a tie with Tara McKeown for the USC lead in goals (7). McKeown fired eight shots against Baylor but came up empty.
Olufolasade Adamolekun assisted both goals.
The Trojans open Pac-12 play Saturday with a heavyweight bout against Stanford.
California suffers first loss
Cal saw its winning streak end too, falling at home to Portland 2-0 on Sunday after beating UC Riverside 2-0 on Friday.
The Golden Bears outshot Portland 12-5 and earned 11 corner kicks but to no avail. Portland keeper Jenny Wahlen made a pair of key saves in the second half to preserve the win.
Portland’s Jamie Rita scored a header in the 58th minute, then Rachel Knaw added in insurance goal in the 81st minute by following up her own shot off the post.
It was a sour end to what otherwise was a historic non-conference season for the Bears, and things will only get tougher Friday when they travel to UCLA to open the Pac-12 season.
Oregon State only perfect team left in Pac-12
With USC and Cal suffering their first setbacks, Oregon State remains the only perfect team in the Pac-12.
Talk about a storybook season for a team that finished last in the conference last year, winning just two games all season.
Oregon State continued its hot start under first-year coach Matt Kagan on Thursday by outlasting Idaho.
The Vandals struck early, but the Beavers responded with two unanswered goals to improve to 8-0. Kaillen Fried popped up with the game-winner in the 78th minute after assisting on Sophie Conrad’s goal in the first half.
OSU enters conference play with an impressive 21-3 goal differential, only trailing Stanford in goals-against average. Sophomore goalkeeper Bridgette Skiba is second in the Pac-12 in save percentage, third in goals-against average, and tied for fourth in saves.
The Beavers’ next three games are on the road, then they host Stanford and Cal, so their strong start can quickly be derailed if they aren’t careful.
Arizona wins thriller vs. TCU
Arizona eliminated TCU in the NCAA Tournament two years ago, and Saturday’s rematch was just as exhilarating.
After both teams traded goals early—Brooke Wilson got Arizona on the board less than two minutes into the match—a flurry of second-half goals led to an exciting finish.
But TCU, despite having a player sent off, responded with two goals from distance to cut its deficit to 4-3 with four minutes left. Arizona managed to hang on to improve to 6-1.
So far, UA’s only shortcoming was a 4-0 loss to Santa Clara. They open conference play Saturday at home against Colorado, a team they have not beaten since 2013.
It is an extremely critical match considering Arizona then faces UCLA, USC, and Washington State in succession.
Jill's first goal was a rocket! pic.twitter.com/4JHk79MtYD— Arizona Soccer (@ArizonaSoccer) September 22, 2019
Arizona State draws Cal State Bakersfield
The Sun Devils fizzled a bit to finish non-conference play, going 1-2-1 in their last four matches. That included a 1-1 draw to Cal State Bakersfield on Friday in their only game of the week.
CSUB scored early in the second half, and nearly escaped Tempe with a win, but Nicole Douglas equalized things in the 75th minute by netting a penalty kick—her eighth goal of the season, second-most in the Pac-12.
The Sun Devils have been held to one goal in each of their last four matches after scoring 22 goals in their first five matches.
They host Utah at home Friday.
Eddy’s golden goal leads Oregon past Buffalo
Emma Eddy split two defenders and beat the Buffalo goalkeeper on a one-v-one to lead the Ducks past the Bulls 2-1 in the 96th minute.
It was sweet redemption after she failed to convert a similar opportunity earlier in the match. The Ducks’ first goal came courtesy of Zoe Hasenauer, who tied it in the 63rd minute after Buffalo grabbed the lead early.
It was a big win for the Ducks, whose 4-1-3 record keeps them in the hunt for the NCAA Tournament if they can find some success in conference play.
The key will be sharpening up defensively. They have allowed a Pac-12-most 14 goals in eight games.
The Cougars and Bruins both played Hawaii and Pepperdine in Honolulu. WSU left with two wins, while UCLA tied Pepperdine before blowing out Hawaii.
WSU won both matches by one goal, but finished the weekend with a 35-10 shot differential. All three Cougar goals were scored by different players, none bigger than the one from Molly Myers, who notched the game-winner against Pepperdine in the 78th minute.
She chested a cross from Brianna Alger and one-timed past the keeper. It was Myers’ first goal of the season and Alger’s Pac-12 best sixth assist.
Alger assisted on Shayna Whieldon’s game-winner against Hawaii too, when Whieldon headed in a well-placed free kick.
Sixth-year senior goalkeeper Ella Dederick picked up her 43rd and 44th career victories, tying WSU’s all-time record.
For UCLA, Ashley Sanchez and Mia Fishel scored two goals apiece in Hawaii. Sanchez accounted for both goals in the 2-2 draw against Pepperdine. She scored in the fifth minute to give the Bruins and early lead, then in the 65th minute to pull them even.
Fishel scored a goal in each half in the 4-0 rout of Hawaii.
Like Arizona, UCLA’s lone loss came at the hands of Santa Clara.
Washington’s offense explodes at Cal Poly
The Huskies pummelled the Mustangs 5-0, posting their highest scoring total of the season.
Summer Yates had two goals and an assist, continuing her recent hot streak. The sophomore now has five goals and two assists in her last six games.
Scoring was a problem for UW early in non-conference, but they notched eight goals in their last two games, including three against a then-ranked TCU team a couple weeks ago.
The Huskies will host Pacific Northwest rival Oregon on Friday, an important game for both teams’ NCAA Tournament aspirations.
Colorado sweeps in-state foes
Taylor Kornieck extended her points streak to five games in CU’s wins over Northern Colorado and Denver.
The senior had two goals and an assist in the 4-0 win over Northern Colorado, then an assist in the 2-0 victory over Denver. With six goals and five assists, Kornieck and Stanford’s Catarina Macario are the only players in the Pac-12 in the top five in both goals and assists.
Freshman Tessa Barton also shined for the Buffaloes, with a goal in each match, giving her three on the season.
Aside from an overtime loss to defending national champion Florida State, the Buffs cruised through non-conference play with a 19-5 goal differential, beating the likes of Baylor and Texas.
Colorado’s season unfolded in a similar way last year, before they tailed off in conference play and wound up missing the NCAA Tournament. They will look to avoid a similar fate starting Friday at Arizona.
Utah extends unbeaten streak
The Utes played their first home games in three weeks and extended their unbeaten streak to four games by drawing Butler (0-0) and beating San Diego (1-0) to improve to 5-3-1.
Those scores fit Utah to a tee. Offense has been at a premium for the Utes this season, being held to just seven goals so far, easily the fewest in the Pac-12. Washington is second-to-last with 13.
At the same time, the Utes have only allowed seven goals, thanks in part to goalkeeper Carly Nelson who leads the conference with 34 saves.
Catarina Macario drilled a free kick from 25 yards out to lead Stanford to a 4-2 road win over a pesky Santa Clara team. The 77th minute strike gave the Cardinal a 3-2 lead after the Broncos matched each of Stanford’s first two goals.
Madison Haley put the game on ice in the 84th minute by beating the keeper on a counter.
Macario was also credited with an assist on the game’s first goal, when Sophia Smith scored from inside the 18 after Macario created a turnover.
The Brazilian forward leads the Pac-12 in goals (10) and is tied for the lead in assists (6), so far making a strong case to be the TopDrawerSoccer Player of the Year for the second straight season.
Pac-12 standings through Sunday
Oregon State 8-0
Washington State 7-1
Arizona State 6-2-1
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