LOS ANGELES – In a game that featured a wild first half with six goals, Santa Clara women's soccer fell on the road to No. 7 UCLA 4-2 Thursday night.
Santa Clara (1-2) jumped out to an early lead but the UCLA (3-0) offense that had scored five goals in each of its first two games came storming back with three unanswered goals and got a hat trick from Hailie Mace.
In the ninth minute, Maria Sanchez sent a beautiful cross into the six-yard box that Julie Doyle headed right through the legs of the UCLA keeper and into the back of the net to put the Broncos up 1-0.
The Bruins came right back, however, with a goal in the 17th minute from Anika Rodriguez. Two minutes later, Mace scored her first of the night to give the Bruins a 2-1 lead.
After another goal from Mace in the 25th, Kelsey Turnbow scored her first career goal in the 37th minute by using some fancy footwork on a counterattack to get just enough space and sent a shot over the keeper and off the crossbar to make it 3-2.
With just 30 seconds to go in the first half, Mace completed the hat trick to stretch the Bronco deficit back to 4-2.
- This was the first time in 53 matches that the Broncos allowed more than two goals and lost by more than one. The last time was a 5-2 defeat at BYU on Oct. 23, 2014.
- It was also the first time the Broncos played in a game that featured six or more goals since the same matchup with the Cougars.
- Both Shelby Schumacher and Myah Baksh made their collegiate debuts while Briar Blake made her season debut.
- Melissa Lowder made five saves.
- Santa Clara is now 5-5-2 all-time vs. UCLA.
"As a team, we're still trying to figure out the best formation for us and we played some people in different positions tonight. We were pleased with what we saw and were happy that we scored two goals. We also liked how many chances we created.
"It's disappointing to let in four goals but the score of the game doesn't reflect how close it was. Their keeper made a great save to keep it from being tied 3-all and then they came back and scored. The difference between 4-2 and 3-3 was slim.
"For a road game against a top-10 team, we're happy with what we saw offensively. We need to shore up a few things defensively and hopefully we'll do that before Sunday."
Santa Clara head coach Jerry Smith
Santa Clara returns home to take on Washington State Sunday at 1 p.m. It will be the Broncos final home game until Sept. 17 when Stanford comes to Stevens Stadium.
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