MALIBU, Calif. – Ally Holtz and Rylee Baisden starred offensively for the second straight game for a short-handed Pepperdine women’s soccer team and led the Waves to a 3-1 victory over visiting Saint Mary’s in West Coast Conference action on Sunday.
In the Waves’ regular-season home finale, Holtz (Honolulu, Hawaii/Punahou School) had two goals and an assist, while Baisden (Yorba Linda, Calif./Esperanza HS) had a goal and an assist. Pepperdine improved to 9-5-2 overall and 4-2 in the WCC, while Saint Mary’s fell to 6-10, 2-3.
The Waves were without junior forward Lynn Williams (Fresno, Calif./Bullard HS), the WCC’s leading scorer. She was injured late in the first half of Friday’s game against Pacific and was not suited up today. Baisden and Holtz scored second-half goals in the 2-1 victory over the Tigers after Williams’ departure.
Today, Baisden gave the Waves a 1-0 lead in the fourth minute of the game, and Holtz doubled Pepperdine’s advantage in the 29th minute. Saint Mary’s got a goal back in the 44th minute, but Holtz notched her second brace of the season with an insurance goal in the 57th minute.
It was a pretty dominating performance by the Waves even without Williams, as they outshot the Gaels 29-14. The final margin could have been greater except for some outstanding saves by SMC goalkeeper Kaeli Schmidt, who finished with 11.
“We played some really good soccer today,” Pepperdine Coach Tim Ward said. “Rylee got that early goal. Ally’s been knocking on the door all year and she got two really good goals. By and large our defense did great and our midfield did a really nice job of possessing under pressure. We showed a lot of composure in the final third.”
On Senior Day, the Waves recognized five players and sent them out with a victory in what would be their final home game barring an NCAA Tournament appearance: goalkeeper Carolyn Dapper (Edmonds, Wash./King’s HS), defender Kristin DeGrandmont (Portland, Ore./Jesuit HS), midfielder Katie Rivers (Vancouver, Wash./Mountain View HS), midfielder Katie Gallanes (Yorba Linda, Calif./Esperanza HS) and defender Michelle Pao (Cupertino, Calif./Monta Vista HS).
“We have three core values in the program: sacrifice, solidarity and humility,” Ward said. “This senior class has really represented these three virtues. They’ve led and they led well. It’s a strong group of women that will be amazing women after they’re done at Pepperdine. This is a perfect result for the day.”
The Waves didn’t take long to get on the scoreboard. The Waves won the ball in their offensive half, and Holtz ended up with it on the left side. She dribbled past one defender and sent the ball into the middle of the box between two Gael defenders and into the path of Baisden, who one-timed it in from 10 yards out at 3:01. It was Baisden’s second goal of the season and second in two games.
Pepperdine made it 2-0 at 28:18. Freshman Colby Carson (Morgan Hill, Calif./Valley Christian HS) sent in a cross in from the left side that an SMC defender attempted to clear, but had it deflect off another defender. The ball went to Holtz at the top of the box, and she dribbled past one defender and sent in a low shot that found its way inside the left post.
Late in the first half, Saint Mary’s cut the Pepperdine lead in half. Caroline Beaulne took the ball away from a Pepperdine defender and fed Briana Campos for her team-high sixth goal of the season at 43:10.
Pepperdine kept up the pressure in the second half and was rewarded at 56:46 following a nice series of passes. Freshman Kristen Rodriguez (Inglewood, Calif./Notre Dame Academy) had the ball at the top of the box and played it back to Baisden, who immediately sent the ball ahead and to the right to Holtz. Holtz took one dribble and hit a hard shot that made its way to the back of the net inside the left post. It was Holtz’ third goal in two games and her fifth of the season.
Pepperdine won its eighth consecutive game against Saint Mary’s and is unbeaten in the last 12 games in a streak that began in 2002.
Pepperdine plays its final three regular-season games on the road, beginning Friday (Nov. 1) at San Francisco at 5 p.m. in a matchup that can be viewed on TheW.tv.
Goals: Rylee Baisden (Ally Holtz), PEPP, 3:01; Ally Holtz, PEPP, 28:18; Briana Campos (Caroline Beaulne), SMC, 43:10; Ally Holtz (Rylee Baisden, Kristen Rodriguez), PEPP, 56:46.