October 23, 2009

Vernon Scores Overtime Winner In 1-0 Victory Over Pepperdine

Oct. 23, 2009

Box Score

SANTA CLARA, Calif. - The No. 16 Santa Clara women's soccer team earned its 11th overall victory of the season and captured its fourth extra-minutes victory of the year with a 1-0 win over Pepperdine thanks to freshman Allie Vernon's lone goal in the second overtime. The win is the third in West Coast Conference play for the Broncos as they sit in second place heading into Sunday's match with Loyola Marymount.

The first half was all Santa Clara, as it went on to out-shoot the Waves 6-1. Freshman Meleana Shim nearly put the Broncos up 1-0 in the second minute, but her shot that beat Pepperdine goalkeeper Roxanne Barker was cleared off the goal line by a defender.

Santa Clara's next best chance came in the 11th minute when redshirt senior Courtney Lewis' attempt hit the crossbar, keeping the game at a scoreless tie. In net, Pepperdine's Barker only needed to make two saves in the half, and both were routine.

In the Bronco defensive zone, senior goalkeeper Lisa Lahman was not credited with a save in the half, but had to make two good sliding challenges on 50-50 through balls in the last ten minutes of the half. The most dangerous came with about nine minutes left when Sophia Medina was a touch away from knocking it past Lahman, but the Santa Cruz, Calif. native smothered it into safety.

After the break, Lahman was tested just four minutes and 32 seconds into the second half, tipping Michelle Spacciapolli's shot over the crossbar for a corner kick that proved to be uneventful.

The game continued much more evenly, with the Waves earning two shots, one on goal, to Santa Clara's three.

With 8:30 left in the game, senior Kiki Bosio slipped a neat through-ball to an onrushing Courtney Lewis, but the ball was just out of Lewis' reach as Barker slid in for the stop.

In overtime, the Broncos had a flurry of chances. The first quality chance came when sophomore Jenny LaPonte found Shim near the left corner of the penalty box. Shim then backheeled the ball to Webster, fooling the defense. Webster's shot was initially saved by Barker and then hit the post before Barker recovered to grab the loose ball.

Moments later, Bosio flicked the ball to herself, splitting two defenders on the way, on the left side of the end line. Bosio's shot was redirected by Barker towards freshman Allie Vernon, but she arrived at the same time as a defender and the ball was cleared.

In total, Santa Clara had four shots in the first overtime, but couldn't find the net. But just two and a half minutes into the second overtime, Vernon ended it positively for the Broncos.

Bosio sent a flip-throw in from the Santa Clara half to LaPonte. LaPonte carried it down the left flank, beating a few defenders on the way, and crossed the ball perfectly to Vernon's head. The rookie out of Homer Glen, Ill. made the most of the chance, netting it just inside the right post.

The Broncos improve to 11-5-1 on the season with the win and finished the game with a 15-4 advantage in shots. Lahman completed the match with two saves and her second career shutout. Santa Clara continues WCC play on Sunday with a 1 p.m. match at Buck Shaw against the visiting Loyola Marymount Lions.