SANTA CLARA, Calif. – No. 15 Santa Clara women's soccer topped Florida International by a final of 1-0 on Friday night at Buck Shaw. The win puts the Broncos at 2-1-0 on the season while the Panthers are 1-2-0.
Santa Clara returns to the field Fri., Sept. 5 at 5 p.m. vs. No. 11 Notre Dame.
"A lot of credit goes to FIU who I thought played really well tonight," said Santa Clara head coach Jerry Smith. "They were very organized and had a great game plan against us. We just didn't have a lot of opportunities in the first half and the game was at their pace. We came out and had some good chances right away in the second half but then it went back to a back and forth game. We'll take a shut out for sure but we need to improve on our attacking rhythm."
Santa Clara outshot FIU 12-5 and shots on goal were 4-3. Sofia Huerta led the way for the Bronco offense with the goal while Kat McAuliffe had the assist. Andi Tostanoski picked up three saves in net.
Kat McAuliffe nearly put the Broncos on the board in the 10th minute on some nice passing. A beautiful ball came from Jenna Roering to Sofia Huerta in the box, who passed it to a sliding McAuliffe whose shot was saved.
Florida International nearly scored a minute later. Johanna Volz got behind the defense and had a one-on-one with Tostanoski but she misfired and the shot went off target to the right.
Santa Clara outshot FIU 8-4 in the first half with both teams registering three shots on goal. Jordan Jesolva led the Bronco offense with three shots and one on goal while Tostanoski collected three saves.
Santa Clara came out of the gates in the second half putting pressure on the FIU defense. They got four corners in the first six minutes of the half and had several close calls but couldn't score.
The Broncos finally broke through in the 76th minute on a beautiful play. McAuliffe sent a ball from far outside the box into Huerta who headed the ball into the back of the net to put Santa Clara up 1-0.
The final 14 minutes ran out and the Broncos held on for the 1-0 win.