September 21, 2012

Broncos Win Overtime Thriller 1-0 Over CSU Northridge

Check out photos from the match! (Credit Denis Concordel)

SANTA CLARA, Calif. - In yet another nail-biter, Santa Clara women's soccer took down CSU Northridge 1-0 in overtime. Santa Clara is now 5-2-3 and CSU Northridge suffers just its second loss and moves to 3-2-3.

The offensive star of the game was recently returned Julie Johnston who had six shots, including four on goal, and the game-winning goal in overtime. Sofia Huerta had five shots as the Broncos outshot the Matadors 22-6 including 4-0 in overtime. Goalkeeper Andi Tostanoski picked up two saves.

The Broncos return to the pitch on Sun., Sept. 23 vs. Washington State at 1 p.m. on Buck Shaw.

"We'll take the win against a very tough team," said Santa Clara head coach Jerry Smith. "They haven't given up many goals this season and they defended us mostly with 11 players in their own half so it was hard to find room to shoot. It was a tough night against a team that was well-coached, athletic and determined. We still have to improve in scoring goals. Hopefully we get a little momentum in the goal-scoring category and get on a positive streak."

"I did what we call a shot-cross where you serve it in so it can either go in the goal or someone can get onto it," said Johnston. "It was exciting to score my first goal in overtime but I wish it had been earlier in the game. I really wanted to come in and make a big difference. As a captain I need to do my job and hopefully there is more to come."

Both goalkeepers made saves by punching shots over the crossbar in the first half but neither team had many chances and the first half ended with the score tied 0-0.

Santa Clara nearly broke through in the 65th minute on a loose ball in the box. Brooke Rice gained control of the ball in front of the goal and fired a shot that the goalkeeper blocked. The rebound went into a crowd of people and Alyssa Kleiner got the ball but sent a shot wide left.

In the 77th minute Johnston gathered a ball outside the top of the box as she was just onside. After taking a couple of dribbles, Johnston turned and fired a shot that went over the crossbar to keep the game scoreless.

Huerta again attacked the goal in the 83rd minute but couldn't find the back of the net. She gained control of a lob pass near the top of the box and headed it to herself but her shot was blocked. On the rebound her second attempt was also blocked by the defense.

Four minutes into the first overtime the Broncos had the best scoring opportunity of the game. Johnston took a ball down the left sideline and dribbled into the box before centering the ball the Katie Speidel who one-timed a shot that went over the crossbar.

With just under two and a half minutes left in overtime Johnston got the ball outside the left side of the box and lifted a high shot across the goal. She placed it beautifully, just over the goalkeeper's reach and the ball landed in the side of the net to give Santa Clara the 1-0 win.