Women rebound from setback

    The UCSD women’s soccer team traveled north to take on UC Davis on Oct. 6 to face the Aggies in an important matchup. Coming off a disappointing loss two days earlier against Chico State, the Tritons shut out UC Davis 1-0.

    Guardian File photo

    “”That was a big game for us after the loss on Friday night,”” said Triton head coach Brian McManus.

    UCSD controlled the pace of play early in the game, and it kept the ball on the Aggies’ half of the field for the majority of the first half.

    In the game’s 24th minute, Triton defender Christine Wensel passed the ball from the middle of the field to teammate Kristen Conahan, who was just outside the penalty box in front of the UC Davis goal. Aggie goalkeeper Christine Ogden came off her line to challenge the play, and Conahan lobbed the ball to open forward Shannon Harrelson, who headed the ball into the net to provide the entire game’s scoring.

    During the second half, UC Davis played the role of the aggressor and dominated play. The Aggies fired 11 shots in the period, while the Tritons only managed two.

    UC Davis’ best opportunity came in the 54th minute, when Aggie midfielder Leifa Mayers took a pass off a free kick and headed the ball wide of the UCSD goal.

    Late in the game, UC Davis challenged the Triton defense. With UC Davis’ defense pushing up the field, Aggie defender Katie Shesgreen blasted a shot from 25 yards out in front of the Triton goal. UCSD goalkeeper Kami Poma jumped to knock the ball over the crossbar for one of her four saves during the Triton shutout.

    “”Davis came at us with everything they got, but we maintained our composure,”” McManus said.

    UC Davis head coach MaryClaire Robinson was pleased with her team’s second-half performance, but the two-time defending national champion Tritons pulled out a needed victory.

    “”They got an unspectacular goal in the first, but a goal is a goal, and they made it stand up,”” Robinson said. “”We made things happen in the second half, but against teams like UC San Diego, you have to play all 90 minutes.””

    UCSD, which has been playing slightly below the standard that it has set for itself in the past, is tied with Cal Poly Pomona at the top of the South Division in the California Collegiate Athletic Association standings.

    Both teams have conference records of 7-2, and the No. 3-ranked Tritons, who excel when they play a relaxed game, will need to continue winning the tight games down the stretch to obtain the top seed when the playoffs begin.

    “”We have to do the simple things, just by playing soccer, and relaxing a little bit,”” McManus said. “”Sometimes we put pressure on ourselves. We don’t need to.””

    The men’s soccer team will take on Cal State Stanislaus on Oct. 11 at Triton Soccer Stadium and then Cal State Bakersfield on Oct. 13, also at home.

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