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The UCSD Guardian

The Student News Site of University of California - San Diego

The UCSD Guardian

The Student News Site of University of California - San Diego

The UCSD Guardian

Kennedy Carter becomes Tritons’ all-time leading Division I scorer in huge win over Gauchos

Kennedy+Carter+becomes+Tritons%E2%80%99+all-time+leading+Division+I+scorer+in+huge+win+over+Gauchos
Image by Millie Root for The UCSD Guardian

This past Thursday night, the UC San Diego women’s soccer team (3-6-3, 2-1-1 Big West) took on UC Santa Barbara (3-5-7, 1-3-2 Big West), defeating the Gauchos 2-1. It was an electric night in La Jolla as the season-high 541 attendees witnessed a back-and-forth affair at Triton Soccer Stadium, with both teams fighting hard to get a victory. The Tritons started slow in this one, a normality in their season so far, but were able to fight back through Kennedy Carter’s two goals, making her the all time leading scorer for UCSD in Division I. 

 

As we got underway in the first half, the visiting Gauchos put themselves on the board first. A long pass from the midfield found itself at the feet of the Gauchos’ striker where her shot was saved by the UCSD goalie, senior Keara Fitzgerald. Unfortunately, the rebound bounced back to their striker, who took a second shot and scored, putting UCSB up 0-1 in the 12th minute. The Tritons would have to dig deep and feed off the crowd’s energy to make it out of this 0-1 hole. 

 

In the 21st minute of the game the Tritons struck back, as freshman midfielder Alexis Nguyen performed a slick dribble to escape three defenders surrounding her. She then found senior forward Kennedy Carter at the top of the box, who sent a finesse shot into the bottom right corner of the goal. The crowd erupted as the ball hit the back of the net, and the Tritons swarmed Carter to celebrate the game being back on an even playing field.

 

Unfortunately for the Tritons, things did not continue to go smoothly, as in the 32nd minute an errant slide tackle in the box led to a penalty kick for UC Santa Barbara. UCSB’s striker lined up for the penalty kick, took her run up and shot to the left side of the goal, where goalie Fitzgerald flew out of nowhere to save the ball to prevent the Tritons from going down 2-1 before half time. Thirteen minutes later, the halftime whistle blew with the game tied at 1-1. An explosive first half between these squads ended with nothing separating these two teams, leading to an extremely important second half to determine the outcome of the game. 

 

UCSD started the second half much faster compared to the first half. A huge opportunity was barely missed in the 55th minute as sophomore defender Talisa Lin floated a shot that was just too high, banging off the crossbar and falling out of play. Although the Tritons missed that opportunity to take the lead, they were creating openings for themselves, and a goal was coming soon. 

 

After an errant shot from the Gauchos, the Tritons had a goal kick, usually a set piece that doesn’t create much of a threat to the other team. Fitzgerald sent her kick past the half-way line on the left side of the pitch, where a UCSB midfielder headed the ball backwards to the feet of Kennedy Carter, who was running ahead of the defenders. Carter dribbled her way to the penalty box, where she calmly hit the ball with her left foot, sending it past the keeper and into the bottom right corner of the goal. The Tritons took the lead for the first time this game, giving them a 2-1 advantage with 18 minutes left. 

 

The Tritons held down the fort, preventing UCSB from getting any other opportunities for the remaining 18 minutes of the game. With the victory, the Tritons claimed their third win of the season in a tough fought battle with the Gauchos. 

 

Head coach Kristen Jones said that the team “did the things they needed to in the moments that mattered.”

 

“I’m proud of them for going down a goal early and fighting back — it’s just showing where we’re at as a team right and I think it’s a good place,” Jones said.

 

When asked about Carter’s performance tonight, Jones responded, “Her presence on the field, she means a lot to us … if there’s somebody in that situation tonight on that breakaway, if there’s anyone I want on that ball it’s Kennedy.”

 

By the time of this article’s publication, the next game for UCSD’s women’s soccer will be on the road against UC Irvine on Thursday, Oct. 12.

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About the Contributors
Jake Lannon
Jake Lannon, Senior Staff Writer
4th year Communications major. Looking to work professionally in the field of sports media in the future and you should all read my articles no matter what.
Millie Root
Millie Root, Photo Editor
Millie loves the way light reflects off bus windows, artisenal teas, and community co-ops. Join Millie on the journey of a lifetime to tell important stories with amazing photographs.
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