Women’s soccer rolls over CSU Monterey Bay

    Even with the addition of 15 new players to the No. 16 UCSD women’s soccer team this season, it did not take long for the women to develop team chemistry. The Tritons have lost only one match, and 12 different players have scored goals thus far. On Oct. 10, UCSD extended its winning streak to seven games with a 5-1 romp over California Collegiate Athletic Association newcomer Cal State Monterey Bay in Seaside, Calif.

    “It was a good game,” UCSD head coach Brian McManus said. “The first 20 minutes was tight and our girls were fired up. We had a couple of breakaways and we scored a couple of goals [on the breakaways].”

    Senior midfielder Jaclyn Shaffer and sophomore midfielder Megan Dickey put UCSD ahead in the first half, opening up the floodgates for the offense. Shaffer’s goal was unassisted while sophomore forward Kelly Cochran picked up an assist on Dickey’s goal.

    “[Cal State Monterey Bay] was actually not that bad of a team,” Cochran said. “[However], once we finally scored, they backed off a lot. We scored many different kinds of ways so that was good.”

    In the second half, the Tritons continued to exploit the Otters’ weak defense, scoring three more goals. Shaffer recorded her second goal of the afternoon with an assist from freshman midfielder Caitlin Ryan. Dickey also netted her second goal of the game while junior defender Kristina De La Rosa tallied the fifth goal for UCSD.

    “We played really well and just finished our chances,” McManus said.

    The Otters finally broke through the Tritons’ solid defense and found the back of the net with less than six minutes left in the match. Cal State Monterey Bay’s Danyell Cortopassi put one past freshman goalie Meira Dinsmore (usually a midfielder), who came in late in the match to replace injured senior goalie Jamie Lautenschleger. However, Cortopassi’s goal was the only bright spot for the Otters in their 10th loss of the season, dropping them to 1-10 overall, 0-8 in the CCAA.

    The Tritons outshot the Otters, 17-9, and had six corner kicks while Cal State Monterey Bay had none. Lautenschleger had three saves before she left the match, while the Otters’ Mallory Carroll and Valentina Valdez combined for three saves and allowed five goals. Although Lautenschleger was injured by a kick to the hand, McManus expects her to start in the Tritons’ next match.

    Meanwhile, UCSD improved to 11-1 overall and 7-1 in the CCAA. The Tritons sit atop the North Division, holding the best record in the CCAA.

    Dickey and Cochran both lead the Tritons in scoring with 14 points each; Dickey has six goals and two assists while Cochran has five goals and four assists. Freshman forward Ali Lai has eight points, and Shaffer has seven. On defense, Lautenschleger has been solid in the net for UCSD with a .886 save percentage. Her goals-against average is 0.41, compared to the opponents’ average of 2.21. Lautenschleger and the Triton defense continue to be stable, allowing only six goals so far this season and recording seven shutouts. UCSD’s offense has outscored its opponents 27-6.

    The current success of the Tritons has brought more confidence to the whole team, and the old and new players are adjusting well to each other.

    “I definitely think we’ve been playing well lately,” Cochran said. “The team is coming together and it’s easier to play. We play with a lot more confidence.”

    UCSD returns home to play Chico State on Oct. 15 at RIMAC Field. Chico State is currently 6-3-3 overall and 5-1-2 in the CCAA. The match begins at 7 p.m.

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