On Saturday April 15, the UC San Diego (UCSD) Women’s Club team traveled to San Bernardino to take on the Cal State San Bernardino (CSUSB) Coyotes. The Tritons aimed to keep their undefeated league streak, but they knew it would be a difficult task in the 80 degree heat with only 13 players due to injuries and music festivals. Regardless, the game started off with UC San Diego dominating right away. Freshman Cynthia Ruiz gave the Tritons a 1-0 lead 10 minutes in, with a great finish from far out, over the hands of the San Bernardino goalkeeper. Not long after, the Tritons received a free kick outside of the box taken by junior Emma Schoenthal. After rebounding, Ruiz slotted the ball into the goal to give the Tritons a 2-0 lead going into half time. The second half proved difficult with tired legs and the burning sun, but after several near misses on goal, freshman Tori Woo received the ball outside the 18-yard box and despite having 2 girls nearly foul her, managed to get back up and perfectly place a driven ball to the bottom left corner of the goal. The Tritons finished the game with a 3-0 win, and an 8-0 league record with one more game to go. Catch the reigning league champs in their last game of the season on Wednesday, April 18 at Sports Deck against the infamous San Diego State University where the Tritons will dedicate the game to their graduating seniors.
Tritons Fall to UNR in First Game of UC San Diego Tournament
At the 9th Annual UC San Diego Women’s Club Soccer Invitational on April 8th, UC San Diego lost 0-1 to the University of Nevada (UNR) in its first group stage game of the tournament. In the first half, the Tritons struggled to create chances against a quick and aggressive Nevada side. Early in the half, one of San Diego’s defenders arguably pushed a Nevada player to contest a header in the box. A soft call, but regardless the referee pointed to the spot. In the ensuing penalty kick, senior goalkeeper Amy Schwartz came up big to deny Nevada an almost certain goal, diving to the left to parry away the shot. The game remained tied, with little to show from a listless and uncoordinated San Diego offense while Nevada continued to dominate the game. Minutes before the end of the first half, a Nevada forward crossed a high ball from the left flank which landed at her teammate’s feet inside the box. San Diego was slow to react and didn’t pressure the player immediately, giving her enough space to shoot the ball toward the top left corner just past the goalkeeper’s hands. The Tritons would have to erase a one goal deficit coming into the second half. After a riveting pep talk from their captains, UC San Diego started to play their game in the second half. Wing backs and forwards made runs down the lines as the Tritons pushed forward, applying high pressure and trying to thread the needle through Nevada’s defense. San Diego generated some good chances off through balls and corners, but none of them found the back of the net. Frustrations mounted as freshman Kristen Wong picked up a yellow card for a dangerous slide tackle from behind. Another freshman, Sam Clardy, made her debut for UC San Diego when she was subbed on as a center back in the last minutes of the game. The clock was ticking and San Diego, changing to a 4-3-3 formation, was desperate for the equalizing goal. It never came, and the game ended 0-1 to UNR, marking the home team’s first loss since fall quarter. The Tritons will play the University of Utah (UU) next in a must-win game in order to advance out of the group bracket.
Tritons Get Their First Win
The UC San Diego Women played Utah in the second game of their home tournament. It was a must win game if UC San Diego wanted to advance to the semifinals the next day. The first half saw San Diego mostly controlling the play. About halfway into the half, Emma Schoenthal put away a penalty kick after Cynthia Ruiz was taken down in the box. The teams went into halftime with the Tritons up 1-0. Part way through the second half, a cross snuck across the Utah goal and after multiple attempts to finish it, Shannon McAndrews finally slotted it into the bottom right corner. With about 15 minutes left in the game, Anais Ortiz had a long throw in that rolled across the 18-yard box, and Alex Diaz shot the ball just past the hands of the Utah keeper. The final score was 3-0 Tritons. This score line sealed the fate of the Tritons as they advanced to the semifinals against Sacramento State University.
Tritons Pull Through
In the semi-final match of the tournament, UC San Diego faced Sacramento State at 8 am in Sunday morning. Both teams seemed sluggish during warmups, but that soon turned to high energy as the whistle blew to start the first half. Sac State came out strong and high pressed the Tritons. The San Diego defensive line found their groove as they were not intimidated by the rushing forwards and soon found the feet of midfielder, Emma Schoenthal who passed the ball out wide to defender Audrey Mays and as she juked the defender in front of her the ball went out but was a throw in for San Diego. Midfielder Anais Ortiz stepped up to the plate and threw an arching ball right to the feet of McKenzie Kirn who made perfect contact with the dipping ball and volleyed it right into the corner of the net to put the Tritons up 1-0. Soon after Sac State got a free kick and bulleted the ball right past the hands of keeper Amy Schwartz and this tied the game up to end the first half. The girls on both teams looked fired up as the second half started and the ball skipped across the wet grass. Both teams had a fire under their belts as both wanted to move on to the finals and be named number one. This hope was soon crushed for Sac State as San Diego put away two more goals to move onto the finals. The tritons played the best soccer yet this tournament with long flank runs, short passes through the midfield, and long balls over the top to running forwards, Miriam Bell and Cynthia Ruiz. The game ended with a score of 3-1 and the Tritons take on San Marcos in the finals.
UC San Diego vs. CSU San Marcos
On April 9th, the UC San Diego Women’s Club Soccer team took to the field for their fourth and final game of the weekend – the championship match. CSU San Marcos had triumphed over Cal Poly in the semi-finals for the chance to face-off against the renowned Tritons. As the whistle blew, players leapt into action as both teams made fervent attempts to take an early lead. This back and forth continued until San Marcos was called for a foul just outside their 18-yard box. Junior (the one and only) Emma Schoenthal stepped up to take the direct kick. With a well-placed bullet the Tritons were now up 1-0. However, within 10 minutes, amidst confusion and frenzy in the Triton defending third, San Marcos had taken a goal of their own. The half time whistle was blown and the score stood at 1-1. Both teams came back out to the second half intent on winning the title of Champion, but as the clock ran out the score remained unchanged. Last minute substitutions were made, the whistle was blown, and penalty kicks were now in order. Graduate student and goalkeeper Amy Schwartz was first in goal and started out strong with an impressive, diving save to stop the first penalty kick from CSU San Marcos. Shannon McAndrews followed suite with a solid shot to the back of the net putting the Tritons up 1-0. San Marcos managed to make their second shot. Unfazed, Emma Schoenthal kept the Triton lead intact. San Marcos, holding steady, successfully made their third kick. Next, Anais Ortiz made a well-placed shot, but San Marcos keeper came up big to make her first save, now the score was tied. San Marcos made a costly mistake and sent their fourth kick veering to the right of the goal – no save necessary. Senior Monica Cuevas, with her usual flare, brought the score to 3-2. The last San Marcos kicker gave her team a small recovery, but would it be enough? With Freshman Maanasa Kandarpa at the penalty spot – unlikely. Maintaining her calm and composure, Maanasa sent the ball straight to the back of the net. UC San Diego had won the championship and redeemed themselves after last year’s fall to Cal Poly in the championship match and were now the proud owners of some good looking and well-earned t-shirts.
On Wednesday, April 5, UC San Diego’s Women’s Club Soccer team came back from spring break with a bang. At 8:30 pm they faced a familiar opponent, Point Loma Nazarene University. At first it seemed to be an even match with the Tritons finding it hard to break the defensive line of the opponents. Just when tempers were flaring, senior Monica Cuevas and graduate student Miriam Bell scored two bangers back to back, ending the first half at 2-0. When the team first played Point Loma, they struggled to score until late in the second half so this early start for the Tritons was a good omen. After a well-deserved half time break, the Tritons came out strong in the second half. An early goal from senior Shannon McAndrews brought the score to 3-0. About 10 minutes into the half, sophomore Lizzie Blackwell received a yellow card for retaliation but these acts were subsided by the score line. Later in the half, goals were scored by freshman Cynthia Ruiz and sophomore Anais Ortiz, making the final score a whopping 5-0. This victory leaves the Tritons undefeated in the Spring League as they go into the weekend hoping to redeem themselves from last year’s mishap in the 9th annual UC San Diego Invitational.
With seven consecutive victories for UC San Diego, the Lady Tritons were hoping to keep their winning streak alive. This Sunday, March 5, the Women’s Club Soccer team faced Grand Canyon University (GCU). Eager for the win, the Tritons were quick to the ball but had trouble keeping it at their feet. GCU tried to capitalize on the Triton’s missed touches but could not get connecting passes through the Triton’s defensive line. In the middle of the first half, Miriam Bell dribbled the ball up the half then passed it on the ground right to Monica Cuevas’s feet, who then was able to pass the ball right by GCU’s goalkeeper. Later in the first half, freshman Cynthia Ruiz took the ball down the line herself, dribbling past all of the defenders and scoring at an almost impossible angle. Grand Canyon had a few chances on goal in the first half but Triton’s defense and goalie shut them out.
Early in the second half both teams came out strong hoping to put one in the back of the net. Tritons won the ball in the middle of the field and Cuevas chipped the ball over the defense right to Elizabeth Blackwell’s feet and she shot a strong ball to the left corner of the goal out of the goalie’s reach. At this point in the half, GCU had not had a chance on goal. Tritons held their strong defensive positions and shut them down at any chance they got. Later, the ball was bouncing around in the middle of the field when defender, Kristen Wong sent a through ball in the air where Miriam Bell hit it off the bounce and right by GCU’s goalkeeper. To end the game, Hannah Hurd sends a ball up over Grand Canyon’s backline and keeper where Cynthia Ruiz was perfectly position and found the back of the net once again. Tritons successfully keep their undefeated record of 8-0. This game ended Spring Quarter for the Lady Tritons and they look forward to next quarter where they will fight to defend their title in the championship game of the San Diego Cup and in Spring League.
Last Wednesday the UC San Diego Women’s Soccer team took on the University of San Diego, USD, in yet another league game. Both teams are competing in the San Diego tournament and could potentially face each other again in the championship, and after this game it is sure to be a good game if USD makes it to the championships. The game was played at 8:30 pm under the lights and the bleachers were full of fans. The first half was a pure stalemate with both teams generating decent chances to score on one another, but in the end proving unsuccessful. One attempt made by UCSD saw the ball go just wide of the far-right corner as the outstretched arms of the keeper just tipped it enough to miss the goal and go out for a corner. Another attempt made by the USD team had the UCSD defense scrambling in the box after a corner kick dropped right behind the keeper’s hands, but fortunately the ball fell to the head of a UCSD defender and was cleared out. The first half ended 0-0. The second half began and both teams were hungry to score. The game yet again was a stalemate in the middle of the field as one team would lose possession and the other would pick it up and so on. Eventually an opportunity came late in the second half when defender Hannah Hurd lobbed the ball over the top of the USD defense onto the running feet of forward Lizzie Blackwell who perfectly timed her ball, passing right to the feet of midfielder Monica Quevas, who coolly finished the chance as she was running into the box to put UCSD up 1-0. UCSD stayed strong throughout the half and ended the game with another win under their belts. They play again Sunday March 5th at 10 am on Sports Deck against Grand Canyon University.
This Sunday, February 26th, the UC San Diego Tritons took on Orange County FC away from home. Throughout the game, the rain would come and go, and at times players were soaked from head to toe. The windy and rainy weather was a bit tough to play in, but despite the rain, the Tritons came out on top. The first half was shaky to begin with due to players misjudging the speed of the ball on both ends of the field. This came to UC San Diego’s advantage when one of the Orange County FC’s defenders misjudged the ball allowing senior Abby Chin to swipe it away from her and give the Tritons their first goal of the game. Miriam Bell later brought the team up 2-0 to end the first half. Miriam was able to put another goal behind the net in the second half with her speed and quick decisions to put the Tritons up 3-0. As the game came to a close, both teams were happy to defrost their hands and drive home in warm cars after being out in the rain for 90 minutes. This win continued UC San Diego’s impressive winning streak for the Spring League. Overall the Tritons played an excellent game. They hope to continue to stay number one in the league as they face yet another difficult component, University of San Diego, home at Sports Deck on Wednesday at 8:30 pm.
Coming off four consecutive West Coast Soccer Association victories, with an impressive 25 goals for and only 1 against, UC San Diego kicked off their title defense of the San Diego Cup against a short sided Point Loma Nazarene University (PLNU). A disciplined bunker defense and a few bouts of bad luck on behalf of the Tritons left the match scoreless at halftime despite the Triton’s’ dominant possession and several beautiful scoring opportunities. The second half, however, saw their effort quickly rewarded with a series of exceptional goals by seniors Shannon McAndrews and Monica Cuevas, junior Emma Schoenthal, and sophomore Lizzie Blackwell. With a final score of 4-0, UC San Diego moves to 5-0-0 overall in 2017 and find themselves well positioned going into the second leg of group stages in the tournament next week. They will play PLNU again on Sports Deck at 8:30pm on Wednesday, February 22nd.
The UC San Diego Women’s Club soccer team faced Riverside this past Saturday, February 11th, for the fourth game of their season. The game started with Riverside pressing hard on the back line of the Lady Tritons. As the UC San Diego women started to calm down and find their rhythm, the first goal of the game started with an off target shot from Kristen Wong that turned into a cross for Monica Cuevas to finish, leading the Tritons up 1-0. A few minutes later Kristen Wong comes in again with a cross from the left side and a block from the goalie, but Manassa Kandarpa was there to get it into the net ending for a lead of 2-0. Riverside was noticeably shook as their pressure eased throughout the half. The second half began and Alaina Bujitor dribbling the ball straight to goal hitting a left foot shot behind the front post. At this point, the Riverside offense had not taken a shot on goal and generated little chances in the UC San Diego’s defensive third of the field. To end the game, the last goal was from McKenzie Kirn who dribbled past the defense and slotted a ball into the left corner of the goal right past the keeper’s hands ending the night with a 4-0 win. UC San Diego remains undefeated and gets another shut out in their spring season. Catch the UC San Diego women defending their title in the San Diego Cup this Wednesday at 8:30 pm at Sports Deck against Point Loma Nazarene for the opening game of the tournament.
On Super Bowl Sunday, the Lady Tritons traveled to San Marcos State University to play their third game of the season. The Tritons were on a winning streak of two games and looked to keep their streak alive. The day was gloomy and crows were circling around the field as to hint towards a bad omen, but that did not stop the UC San Diego women from scoring the first goal of the game within the first minute of play. Freshman Kristen Wong dribbled the ball down the wing and made a beautiful cross that dropped to the feet of freshman McKenzie Kirn who slotted the ball right into the top netting of the goal. The game lulled on with UCSD dominating possession until a corner was given up halfway through the first half. The ball was lobbed into the 6-yard box area by one of the San Marcos girls and another got a touch on it, but luckily the ball hit Wong who was on the post of the goal. Wong then frantically cleared the ball, only to hit Senior Audrey Mays who was on the other goal post, but luckily was bailed out when the ball was finally cleared by Sophomore Hannah Hurd. Unfortunately, all the effort was in vain as the whistle was already blown for a goal before Wong cleared the ball out. The score stayed this way until the middle of the second half when UCSD went up for a corner, and freshman defender Alex Diaz aggressively found the ball in the masses of bodies and powerfully kicked it right past the keeper’s outstretched arms to put the Tritons up 2-1. Tempers flared as the game continued and the ref was not helping the cause, allowing fouls to slip by. Multiple cards were given out to both teams including both a yellow and a red card towards the end of the game. To kill time to secure the win for the Tritons, defender Diaz held the ball by the corner flag as two San Marcos girls struggled to steal it from her and as the whistle blew, the UCSD Women’s Club Soccer team conceived their third win of the Spring Season. Catch them next week playing at home against Riverside at 4pm on Warren where they will hopefully continue their undefeated streak.
The UC San Diego Tritons had a great weekend. They played UC Irvine to open their second game of the season. The lady Tritons were in high spirits coming off of their 15-0 win over Redlands last weekend. As the ball was kicked to initiate the game, the Tritons seemed out of tune as the Anteaters had multiple attacks on the UC San Diego defense. As the first half lulled on with most of the ball possession in the middle of the field, a free kick was given to UC San Diego. Emma Schoenthal stepped up to the plate to take the kick and as she wacked the ball, it soared right over the hand of the opposition’s goal keeper to put the tritons up 1-0. Minutes later Laurel Bowling made her mark on the game by aggressively attacking the ball and lofting a ball again right over the Anteater’s goalkeeper. The first half ended with the Tritons up 2-0. The second half raged on with UC San Diego dominating the game leading to Schoenthal scoring another free kick right outside of the eighteen-yard box. The Anteaters could not take the heat the lady Tritons were serving up. In an instance of luck, UC Irvine was granted a penalty kick but keeper Maya Daruvala kept the score 3-0 as she leaped to save the free kick and pushed the ball out of bounds. As the second half was coming to a close, Abby Chin tricked her defender and rocketed a ball with her left foot right into the back of the net setting up the UC San Diego women with their second win of the season. The women play San Marcos next Sunday, February 4th away and hopefully they can bring home another win for the team.
After a well-deserved break from making it to Nationals in the Fall season, the UC San Diego Women’s team came out ready to begin the Spring League strong on January 21st. The rain cleared up just enough to be a great day for the first game back. They faced the University of Redlands Women’s club team. At the start, the UC San Diego women were rusty, but were able to find their momentum again. Their opponents fought gallantly but were not victorious. The UC San Diego team was able to skillfully maneuver the ball across the field and support one another. They were swift in correcting errors and persistent in playing to their game. The end score was 15-0 which was a big win for the UC San Diego women. At the game’s end, junior Emma Schoenthal commented “I’m so proud of my team for coming out strong in the first game of the season! It’s always hard to come together as a team after a long break apart, but we were organized, enthusiastic, and well-trained”. It was a well-played game and a great start for the UC San Diego women’s team. Excited for what the New Year has for them, the UC San Diego women continue to triumph.
Thursday morning’s 9 a.m. game vs Miami, Ohio kicked off the national showcase weekend for UC San Diego’s Women’s’ Club Soccer team. After many hours of traveling from the previous day the team took the field anxious to begin a weekend full of soccer. The game began at a slow pace as girls from both teams adjusted to Foley, Alabama’s humidity and the weight of the new tournament given soccer balls. The half ended at 1-0 after Miami, Ohio’s shot in the last 10 minutes of the first half. After a second goal to Miami off of a corner kick in the second half, UC San Diego’s Cynthia Ruiz (freshman) received a through ball from center midfielder Monica Cuevas (senior), sending her through the defense and giving her a successful shot on goal. The final score of the match was 3-1 to Miami, Ohio, giving UC San Diego its first loss of the weekend.
For the second game of the tournament, the Lady Tritons faced off against the University of Connecticut. Though slightly bruised and battered, they came out with a thirst to win, knowing full well that this was their last chance to make it into the championship bracket. Despite being plagued by the absence of starting center back Alex Diaz, the Triton defense came out strong with Tori Woo in her place. Throughout the first half, UConn had no promising chances on goal, with all opportunities being shut down by center backs Tori and Hannah Hurd, and wing backs Anais Ortiz and Kristen Wong. Towards the end of the first half, UC San Diego had a few promising chances; notably, Kristen dribbled through UConn’s defense and just barely missed a shot over the cross bar. During the majority of the second half, UC San Diego kept UConn at bay, probing UConn’s goal often. However, in a turn of events UConn counter-attacked and were able to place a goal, leaving the game at a final score of 0-1. After this loss, UC San Diego went on to play in the consolation bracket.
In the third game of the tournament, very close games in pool play left the Tritons playing in the consolation bracket for their third game. UC San Diego faced Delaware at 4pm on 11/18. This was a must win game in order for the Tritons to advance. Taking the field in all white, UC San Diego dominated possession from the start. The first half ended still tied 0-0. Near the end of the second half, Delaware managed to break through the Triton defense and score, leaving the Tritons down 0-1. With the little time left, UC San Diego gave all they had in attempt to get a goal. However, the time ran out and the final score remained 0-1, in favor of Delaware. Regardless of the score, the Tritons still had a blast competing in the NIRSA Club Soccer Nationals Championship Tournament.
Following their success at the UC Santa Barbara Tournament but also the unsatisfying tie with UC Los Angeles (UCLA), the Tritons were eager to start their regionals weekend strong. Saturday morning saw UC San Diego take on Arizona State University (ASU) in the increasing Arizona heat. Midfielder McKenzie Kirn almost put UC San Diego on the scoreboard with a narrow miss as her shot went just wide of the right post. The Tritons came out a little slow but eventually found their usually passing rhythms. Excellent combination play between forwards Laurel Bowling and Lizzie Blackwell, and midfielder and Captain Alaina Bujtor kept ASU on their toes. Midfielder Abby Chin also provided pressure with long shots. ASU did a good job pressuring the UC San Diego players but another great passing sequence between Bowling, Blackwell, and midfielder Anais Ortiz saw Bowling slot one past the keeper for the first goal of the game. ASU kept the game interesting with handspring throw-ins and a free kick which they put over the top from just outside the box. The short field forced captain and keeper Amy Schwartz to come out to collect some long balls which she gathered confidently and blasted back up field to the awaiting strikers.
The second half brought more chances for UC San Diego with Captain Hannah Hurd putting a long free kick just past the far post. The Tritons finally got another as striker Cynthia Ruiz-Lopez passed back to Bujtor who shot low from outside the box into the left corner. Striker Miriam Bell put a last minute chance just wide of the post, but by then win was already sealed and the Tritons were off to a great start. Excellent defense from the whole backline and steady hands and leadership from Schwartz held the shutout. While the Tritons dominated the game, they knew they had to step up their game for a UCLA rematch later the same day.
Second game of the tournament and UC San Diego faced off against neighboring rivals UCLA to clench a spot in the semifinals. UC San Diego came off a win from that morning against ASU while UCLA came off a loss against Cal Poly. This game served as a tie-breaker from the previous weekend when UC San Diego traveled to Los Angeles for the final game of the fall season and came out with a 1-1 tie. From the kickoff, it was clear UCLA was in it to prove they were the superior team and gain respect as a unit, but the cohesion wasn’t all there. UC San Diego dominated the first half with multiple opportunities from the attackers and even some from defenders Hannah Hurd and Kristen Wong high-tailing it up the field creating their own chances. Very few fouls were called either way, but one call gave UC San Diego a free kick taken by Hannah Hurd that was placed perfectly inside the box but shot just over the goal by Miriam Bell. Despite the effort, the game remained tied into halftime. Tension reached an all-time high with the kick off to the second half. UCLA came out harder and stronger, and by harder and stronger I mean, they were going for blood. But the referee allowed the play, so UC Diego matched with the same intensity. Finally, after stealing the ball at midfield from a UCLA outside mid, Alaina Bujitor began penetrating through their middle line and was tripped from behind giving UC San Diego a free kick from 45 yards out. This time Hannah Hurd, reprising the first free kick from about the same spot, took the shot herself and scored blasting the ball into the upper corner in the 60th minute of the game putting UC San Diego up 1-0. The next 20 minutes were spent playing keep away from UCLA and maintaining the lead. Highlight of the game goes to Audrey Mays who held the ball in the corner for a solid minute while UCLA players thrashed around her fighting to take it. At the end of the game UC San Diego clenched the 1-0 and the spot in the semifinals.
The first match of Sunday morning saw the face-off between California Polytechnic State University and UC San Diego for the final game in the group stage Sunday October 30th. Although the Tritons had sealed their spot into the semifinals later that day, they were out to beat all their opponents to prove they were the best team in the region. The game started with a long spell of possession from Cal Poly. This led to a goal from just inside the eighteen-yard box within the first 10 minutes of the match. After about 10 more minutes of even play, UC San Diego gave up a corner which Cal Poly’s outside defender scored off of. At the end of the half the score remained 2-0 in favor of the opposition. UC San Diego came out strong the second half, dominating possession and creating serious chances. Finally, in the 50th minute UC San Diego was able to get on the board with a shot from Senior Laurel Bowling that just dipped over the outstretched keeper’s hands. In a similar fashion Cal Poly scored nearly five minutes later, chipping the ball just over UC San Diego’s keeper’s hands. The game ended with a score of 3-1 in favor of Cal Poly. With this result and their two wins from the previous day of the tournament UC San Diego’s Women’s Club Soccer team advanced to the semi-finals facing UC Santa Barbara.
In the final match of the regionals tournament, UC San Diego faced the infamous UC Santa Barbara (UCSB). The match started with both sides getting good passing sequencing and putting both keepers under loads of pressure. The Tritons defense held off the numerous attacks from the gauchos but were quick to counter with two promising shots on goal from Monica Quevas and Anais Ortiz. The first half was characterized with raging passion and hard work from both sides of the pitch. The Tritons found their rhythm throughout the entire match with captain Alaina Bujtor taking long shots to test the hands of UCSB’s keeper. The Tritons dominated the end of the game by passing around the opponent but were unsuccessful in getting a goal in the net. The game ended with a 0-0 tie and went straight into one fifteen-minute overtime where chaos ensued the 18-yard box, which allowed one UC Santa Barbara attacker to toe poke the ball into the net. This win would allow them to advance themselves to the national tournament in Alabama and send the Tritons home with heads held high for their accomplishments. The Tritons believed their fall season to be over and endured a six-hour car ride home until they received an enjoyable email that invited them the national tournament in Alabama as well! The Tritons will continue their trek to glory as they continue their successful 10-2-2 fall season into nationals during the week of November 15th.
UC San Diego’s Women’s club soccer made the travel to UC Los Angeles to play their final match of the season on October 22nd. Scoring four consecutive shutouts the weekend before in the UCSB Invitational, their spot in Regionals, this upcoming weekend in Arizona was secured, however this game was crucial in order to be successful in regionals in regard to their seating.
The match kicked off at 2:16 pm. UC San Diego was off to a great start, maintaining possession and working the ball around the field trying to find an opening through UCLA’s zoned defense. UCLA was able to make a few possessions for them to only be quickly shut down by UC San Diego’s solid defense in the early minutes of the game. Come the 22nd minute, a deflection sprung from UCLA’s center midfielder with the ball landing right on top of the back line where UCLA’s #14 was in position to sneak behind the defense and tap the ball into the back of the net. The home team was quite roused by their lead and continued strong, while the UC San Diego players worked hard to get the goal back. The first half ended with UCLA in a one, nil lead.
Into the second half, UC San Diego once again came out with the fervor they possessed at the start of the game. Twenty-six minutes in, freshman McKenzie Kirn from the midfield sent a ball across the field to the forwards where our very own Laurel Bowling was running wide down the left flank and with one solid touch sent the ball past the keeper to tie the game up. Team UC San Diego seemed to have found their rhythm in the upper third off the field as numerous shots were taken.
The final whistle resulted in a one to one draw, nonetheless a satisfying game for the significant crowd filled with parents visiting for parent weekend from both schools.
On October 14th, the UC San Diego Women’s Club Soccer team played its first group stage match in the UC Santa Barbara Invitational Tournament against Colorado Gold and secured a 1-0 win. San Diego dominated for most of the game, maintaining possession and generating many chances off crosses from the flanks and through balls down the middle. Held scoreless until the second half, the Tritons finally got their goal from freshman Cynthia Ruiz-Lopez, who scored off of a breakaway that started from a long midfield header flick by senior Alaina Bujitor. The Tritons were able to close out the rest of the game with a shutout, securing the victory which would turn out to be a crucial result for their weekend-long bid for the tournament championship.
In the second game of the group stage the Tritons faced off against Chico State. The game was physical as most of the Chico girls towered over the Tritons. Chico utilized their athleticism with a high-pressing system in the first half, yielding an early chance that forced goalkeeper Amy Schwartz to quickly come off her line to extinguish a breakaway scenario. UCSD quickly regained their composure to break the pressing and systematically began to pick apart Chico’s midfield. A long-range effort from Abby Chin put the Tritons up by a goal going into halftime, and a quick tactical discussion during the break allowed UCSD to carry the momentum into the second half. Soon, a corner kick for UCSD temporarily transformed the game into pinball; after numerous deflections, the ball found its way to the feet of Monica Cuevas and then promptly found its way to the back of the net. Bujitor also put her name on the scoresheet to lead the Tritons to a convincing 3-0 victory.
After progressing through the group with an undefeated record, UCSD squared off against UC Davis in the quarterfinals. The game turned emotional as UCSD scored a late goal in the last 15 minutes of the game to win 1-0. During the game, Davis pressured the Tritons relentlessly waiting to pounce for a goal, but were confronted by a UCSD defense which stayed strong and fended off the attacks. The first half was ended with hunger for a goal on both ends of the field and it showed in the start of the second half. The passion of the game was demonstrated in the amount of fouls that UCSD conceived, a few close enough to the goal for goalkeeper Schwartz to be forced into action. As the second half was coming to a close, Miriam Bell took the game in her hands as she blasted a shot from the edge of the 18-yard box that rippled the back of the net and brought the reigning national champs, UC Davis to a fall and pushed the Tritons to the semifinals the next day.
The UC San Diego Tritons continued their journey to face off against USC in the semifinals of the tournament. The game was, for the most part, evenly matched, with UCSD holding possession of the ball for a little over half of the time. Both teams were holding their own as the game went back and forth. In the games’ dying minutes, UCSD made a bold tactical formation change to exploit the space and pursue an elusive goal. Soon after, McKenzie Kirn would send a scintillating through ball to Cynthia Ruiz-Lopez. Ruiz, outrunning the last defender, kept her composure and made the game winning goal to advance the Tritons on to the finals!
After a grueling four-game gauntlet, the UC San Diego women faced off against UC Santa Barbara in the finals this weekend during the Santa Barbara Tournament. Having suffered a defeat to the Gauchos recently, UC San Diego was eager to nab a victory in enemy territory. The San Diego women put forth a great display of energy despite the weekend’s mileage. Chances were fairly limited for both sides, but horror struck late in the second half when the officiator let out a long whistle and pointed to San Diego’s penalty spot. After a brief conversation with his assistant, the referee uncharacteristically revoked his decision, and the crisis was averted. The game remained scoreless until the end of regulation and went straight into a shootout to decide the victor. UCSD goalkeeper Amy Schwartz put forth a heroic effort in saving two penalty kicks and last-kicker Kelsey Haughan made the back of the net ruffle to secure the championship and restore honor to La Jolla.
Riding on the heels of a crucial victory against UC Irvine, UC San Diego’s Women’s Club Soccer team delivered a solid 3-0 win against UC Riverside at home on Sunday, October 9th.
From the start, the Tritons dominated the game by playing to their skillset and setting the pace early on with a high pressure strategy. Winning the loose balls in the center, San Diego’s midfielders continually found pockets of space to play through balls to the outside backs and forwards, who in turn flew down the flanks and across Riverside’s high defensive line.
Senior midfielder and captain Alaina Bujtor began the offense that led to the first goal. During the 7th minute she took the ball off of a one-two and dribbled down the left flank. Speeding past her defender, Bujtor passed a pinpointed ground ball across the goal for fellow senior midfielder Shannon McAndrews to coolly tap in.
San Diego continued to lay on the pressure as the team looked for a second goal; then, at the 34th minute sophomore forward Elizabeth “Lizard” Blackwell crossed a high lobbing ball into the box amid a scrappy crowd of white and blue shirts. Rising above the others, sophomore midfielder Anais Ortiz got on the end of it with a looping header that somehow found the back of the net despite a Riverside defender’s shanked attempt to clear the ball.
By the end of the first half, San Diego came away with a number of unfinished chances which included numerous corners, narrowly missed close-range shots, and a few long distance screamers hitting the woodwork. At 2-0 up, though, the Tritons didn’t have too much to complain about.
In the second half, the team played a faster tempo, tearing Riverside’s midfield apart with quick passes and coordinated runs across the field. The third goal of the game came only a couple of minutes into the half from freshman forward Cynthia Ruiz – off of a Riverside goal kick, she pounced on an unsuspecting center back’s poor touch. With her teammates cheering her on, Ruiz singlehandedly stole the ball, dribbled into the box, and slotted it home.
Toward the end of the game, San Diego generated a multitude of midfield plays only to be caught offside, but Ruiz’s goal would be the last. UC San Diego’s defense remained largely untested throughout the game, prompting a goalkeeper substitution in the last thirty minutes of the game. From then on, the Tritons played on cruise control to close out the game, handing the team the first shutout and second win of the season.
The win against Riverside provided a much needed boost of encouragement and motivation for the team before it faces tougher opponents in the UC Santa Barbara Tournament next weekend.
In their first away game of the season, the UC San Diego Women’s Club soccer team came away victorious over UC Irvine thanks to a 2-1 score line. The game started off with the Tritons having a majority of the possession and creating many goal-scoring opportunities thanks to their clean passing and teamwork. Even with multiple breakaways, the Tritons could not find the back of the net. That was until Maanasa Kandarpa stepped onto the field. Just subbed into the game, her first touch resulted in a soaring shot from 25 yards out right past UC Irvine’s goalie. UC San Diego stepped off of the gas towards the end of the first half and were subsequently punished, losing the ball near their goal, which resulted in a UC Irvine goal. The first half ended in a 1-1 tie, which encouraged the Tritons to come back out even stronger to score. In the second half, UC San Diego still controlled the game through their possession, albeit the increased intensity in the game. They worked the ball up the field multiple times but kept losing it in the attacking third. They finally achieved their breakthrough when Laurel Bowling put away a breakaway goal to give the Tritons a 2-1 lead. For the rest of the second half, the Triton’s defense worked hard and successfully kept UC Irvine from getting a single shot on goal. The game ended 2-1 giving UC San Diego their first win in the new season.
UC San Diego Women’s Club Soccer began their season on Sunday, October 2nd with a home game against UC Santa Barbara that ended with a 4-0 loss for the Tritons. The game started off well balanced as both teams had their fair share of possession of the ball. San Diego’s defense played strong and at half time the game was tied 0-0. San Diego’s keeper, Amy Shwartz proved that nothing would get past her. What started off as an even match, soon fell apart as UCSB scored their first goal from a corner kick. The Tritons regrouped and maintained their position and had a few opportunities to score, but the ball could not hit the back of the net. The SB offense was able to put a few more goals behind the net before the game ended. Although the Tritons faced a tough loss, they never gave up. They pushed through and gave it their all until the 90th minute. San Diego was ultimately proud of their efforts and hard work. It may not have been the best way to start off the season, but that will give them the extra motivation to keep improving as a team.
The UC San Diego Women’s Club soccer team faced Point Loma Nazarene at home Thursday, November 5th. Competing in the San Diego Cup the team came into the game looking for a win so they could advance to the championship game of the tournament. The first goal of the game came from a long range shot off the powerful foot of Junior Abby Chin who intercepted the ball off of a goal kick. After about 10 more minutes of play a foul was committed right outside the eighteen yard box. Sophomore Emma Schoenthal took the free kick and shot it with power, lifting it just over Point Loma’s outstretched goalie and increasing UC San Diego’s lead to 2-0. The team was looking strong, connecting many passes consecutively and setting a good pace for the game. In the midst of defending Point Loma’s outside right back, Junior Alaina Bujtor stole the ball and seized the opportunity to shoot from 35 yards out, successfully scoring through her placement of the ball in the bottom left corner. Point Loma Nazarene could not respond as UC San Diego continued to play with purpose and showed no signs of backing down. Strong forward Laurel Bowling increased the team’s lead to 4-0, perfectly slotting the ball in the bottom right corner on a breakaway. To close out the first half freshmen Elizabeth Blackwell had two assists, first to Senior Olivia Hadidian and second to Michelle Bulterys. The score at the end of the first half was 6-0. During the second half the Tritons continued to dominate. Although UC San Diego did not put the ball in the back of the net during the second half, they continued to control the pace of the game and defend well. The game ended with a 6-0 tritons victory and a seed into the next round. The Tritons are looking to continue this momentum into their next game on Thursday, November 12th, when they face San Diego State University in the Championship game of San Diego Cup.
UC San Diego and UCLA met again at the Regionals Tournament in Cal Poly. Now being the UC San Diego team’s second game of the day, the heat rising, and the needed to win to keep the team’s hopes of continuing on in the tournament, the Tritons began with a hunger for victory. The UCLA team came onto the field with high expectations hoping to catch the UC San Diego team tired from their first game and thirsty for revenge. For most of the game they seemed to be equal counterparts. UC San Diego began showing dominance on the field and holding onto possession of the ball. They moved the ball well up the field but had few scoring opportunities. Suddenly, the UCLA keeper fouled Laurel Bowling right outside the eighteen yard box. Time seemed to slow down as the UC San Diego free kick was taken.
Kelsey Haughan ran into the box and scored with the help of Elizabeth Blackwell faking out the keeper. The UC San Diego team ended the first half with the lead. As the second half kicked off, the UCLA team came out with greater energy than the last half. As the UC San Diego team fought to keep their lead, the unthinkable happened: UCLA scored. The second half continued to be an ongoing battle. The UC San Diego team attempted to keep UCLA from scoring again while trying to score themselves. Yet, at the end the two teams were still tied, when a foul against the UC San Diego Women’s team was called outside the eighteen yard box. The kicker wound up to take it, and as much as the UC San Diego team fought, the ball found the back of the net. The UCLA team scored took lead of the game. Seconds following the return kick off the ref blew the whistle and the UC San Diego team lost their chances of advancing in the regionals tournament.
On October 25, 2015 the UC San Diego Women’s Club Soccer team headed up to Irvine for the last game of their season. With a win or a tie needed to advance to Regionals the Tritons were all geared up to go. The game started off well for the Tritons but soon fell into a battle of the midfield. While the Tritons possessed the ball well, no forward momentum could be found. Half time saw the score tied with zero goals for each side. A thrilling and motivational halftime talk by captains Mallorie Nguyen and Amy Schwartz pushed San Diego to start strong the second half. And did those Tritons push. Multiple goal scoring opportunities came for Tritons such as Olivia Hadidian, Laurel Bowling, Lauren Taiclet and Lizzie Blackwell in the second half with no luck. The Tritons constantly battled their way up the field, taking on dirty players and sassy refs, with only looks disapproval thrown back at them. Finally in the final minutes of the game, a beautiful ball was crossed in by Abby Chin, agonizingly bounced around inside the box, and was finally placed upper netting in the goal by Alaina Bujtor. The Tritons went on to win 1-0 against the Irvine Anteaters, solidifying second place in the Coast Conference and their ticket to Regionals this coming weekend in San Louis Obispo. And while celebration amongst all was high, keeper Erica Bender was disappointed her post-game hot dog place in Irvine had closed down.
In the last home game of the quarter, the Tritons faced USD on the foggy pitch of Sports Deck. The game started off sluggish for the Tritons, who struggled to connect passes. The Tritons spent a majority of the first half chasing a confident looking USD team, who connected well through the midfield line. As the first half came to a close, the score remained 0-0 with USD looking far more dangerous.
However, the second half proved to be the energy boost the Tritons needed to fight back against their best competition yet. UC San Diego possessed quickly through the midfield, keeping the ball out of the hands of the chasing USD forwards. After a clean tackle in the back, freshman center back Hannah Hurd found senior forward Olivia Hadidian on a long diagonal ball. Hadidian calmly collected the ball in the box, cut around the keeper, and coolly slotted home her final home goal as a student. USD pressed with re-found intensity, but the Tritons were able to hold onto their 1-0 win as time ran out, continuing their successful spring season. They look to close their spring league games with a win at UC Riverside this Saturday.
UC San Diego Continues Undefeated Season on the Road
UC San Diego drove through the fog to face San Marcos on their home turf. Despite shaky play and a dangerous looking San Marcos team, the Tritons scored first, off of a cross from senior Lauren Taiclet that connected with freshman Elizabeth Blackwell’s head. Minutes later, Taiclet herself scored from the corner area off a cross that actually sailed into the back corner of the net. The first half ended 2-0, a dangerous score.
The third goal came after a hard fought midfield battle by freshman Anais Ortiz, who set up senior Olivia Hadidian who slotted the ball home. But then San Marcos gained momentum and won a free kick, which led to a 1 vs. 1 and put themselves on the board for a score of 3-1. Immediately after, Blackwell came off the bench and drove the ball herself into the goal and made it 4-1. San Marcos came back with a nice long shot to make the score 4-2. In the last few minutes of the game, a questionable call gave San Marcos a free kick that was placed into the top corner of the net, finishing the scoring at 4-3. San Marcos was a good team, but the Tritons still managed to come off with the win and look forward to continuing their winning streak against USD this week.
UC San Diego Defends SD Cup against SDSU
UC San Diego Women’s Club Soccer played against city rival San Diego State University on a sunny Saturday afternoon. The game began hectically, neither team maintaining steady possession of the ball. After a few minutes, once players’ nerves settled, the Lady Tritons found composure to combine long strings of passes, moving the ball smoothly from the defense to the forwards and back. The first half saw few shots on goal from either teams, as the ball was kept mostly in the center third of the field. Ending the first half with a score of 0-0, the anticipation for the second half was building.
Both teams came out strong and hungry for the ball in the second half. Four minutes into the second half, senior forward Olivia Hadidian found the back of the net. The ball sneaked its way through SDSU’s defense and Hadidian was one on one with the goalie. Keeping perfectly composed, Hadidian placed the ball too far left for the goalie to reach and put the Tritons at a 1-0 lead. Immediately following the first goal, many more opportunities on goal arose for UC San Diego’s offense. The momentum kept the ball in SDSU’s defensive third; however, not for long, as SDSU picked up the intensity and found a few chances to shoot on senior goal keeper Amy Schwartz but to no avail. The Tritons’ defense and Schwartz remained strong to keep the team’s lead. SDSU desperately tried to get a goal before the clock ran out but UCSD’s possession kept the Aztecs from having any chances. The final whistle blew and UCSD walked away with another win, effectively defending the city title of Best in San Diego.
UC San Diego Continues Strong League Start with Win against Point Loma
The UC San Diego Women’s Club Soccer team faced Point Loma Nazarene this past Sunday to kick off the second game of their season. The game started off strong with junior Abby Chin scoring the first goal after taking on many defenders and dribbling her way into the goal to put UCSD up 1-0. The teams battled for the middle of the first half and a handball was called on the Tritons just outside of the 18-yard box. Point Loma took the kick and scored, tying the game 1-1. The teams continued to knock the ball around, leading to a powerful shot from junior Alaina Bujtor, that hit the cross bar and rebounded straight to Chin’s feet, who finished the job, putting the Tritons up 2-1. UC San Diego continued this momentum to finish off the first half with freshman Lizzie Blackwell breaking away from the pack of Point Loma defenders and dribbling straight to the goal to score another one for UC San Diego putting them up 3-1.
The Tritons continued to fight with purpose and accuracy during the second half and after many missed shots there finally came a third goal for Chin when she came off the bench from a hamstring injury and slotted the ball into the right corner of the goal from outside the 18 right past the keeper. As the Tritons continued to dictate the pace of the game and control the ball around the Point Loma players, they ended the game with a 4-1 win solidifying their second win of the season.
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