The UCSB women’s soccer team hadn’t played a home match in nearly four weeks when it hosted Cal State Northridge at Harder Stadium on Friday night, but the Gauchos didn’t waste any time reacquainting themselves with their surroundings in a 3-0 Big West win over Cal State Northridge.
UCSB (9-5-0 overall, 2-1 in the Big West) jumped ahead of the Matadors (5-6-1 overall, 0-1 in the Big West) in the opening minute. Sophomore forward Kylie McDonald drove down the left side and crossed a ball to junior forward Genelle Ives at the top of the goal box.
Ives leaped at the ball and headed it at CSUN goalkeeper Leah Elliott. Elliott initially seemed to stop the shot, but the ball came loose and trickled over the line to give the Gauchos the lead at 0:54. The goal was the fifth of the season for Ives, tying her for tops on the team.
At 26:03, the Gauchos upped the lead to 2-0. Junior midfielder Jacqui Simon, who was near the right sideline, found junior midfielder Sarah Stoltz in a crowd in front of the goal. Simon hit a perfect cross and Stoltz headed it past Elliott.
UCSB scored its final goal at 42:02 when senior forward Michelle Russell took the ball just over the midfield and lofted a pass toward the right end line. Freshman forward Alissa Sanchez chased it down and crossed the ball to the far post where junior midfielder Kacey Doherty was open for another header that shot by Elliott to make the score 3-0.
The Gauchos dominated the entire match, outshooting the Matadors 19-5. In fact, CSUN had just one shot on goal and freshman goalie Ali Cutler made the save. The shutout was Cutler’s second of the season. Santa Barbara, on the other hand, had six shots on goal, and an additional three shots hit either the crossbar or a goalpost.
UCSB is now off for a week. The Gauchos return to Harder Stadium on Oct. 17 when they host the University of the Pacific in a 7 p.m. match. Tickets for all contests are available at the Athletics Ticket Office in the ICA Building on campus, by calling 805.893.UCSB, by logging on to www.UCSBgauchos.com, or at the Harder Stadium box office one hour before kickoff.
Bill Mahoney is UCSB‘s assistant athletics director.