Shaelan Murison’s second goal of the match tied the score in the 78th minute for UC Santa Barbara as visiting Cal Poly and the Gauchos battled to a 2-2 tie on Sunday afternoon in a Big West match at Harder Stadium.
UCSB (6-4-4 overall, 2-1-1 Big West) and the Mustangs (4-9-2, 1-2-1) played a physical match on a warm afternoon.
Cal Poly claimed a 1-0 lead at the 24:16 mark when Brooke Rubinstein hit a cross from right-to-left that found Nikki Trucco right in front of the goal. Trucco shoved a shot past Gaucho goalkeeper Hanna DeWeese to give her team an advantage that held throughout the first half.
Murison used a tremendous individual effort to tie the score in the 59th minute as she dribbled above the penalty box, faked a pair of defenders and then blasted a shot beyond the reach of Mustang goalkeeper Sophia Brown and into the lower right portion of the goal.
Cal Poly’s tiebreaking goal did not come without some controversy. After DeWeese made a fine save on a shot by Jessica Johnson, the UCSB keeper was whistled for a foul in the box, resulting in referee Nathan Max awarding a penalty kick. Jordan Patane took the spot kick and put it into the left side of the goal to give her team a 2-1 lead at the 70:11 mark.
Murison’s second goal of the match and 12th of the season rescued the Gauchos. The senior from Santa Clara chested home a rebound of an Angelica Ortega shot that had hit the crossbar, equaling the contest at 2-2 at 77:02.
Each team had a handful of golden opportunities to break the draw over the next 32:58, but neither could break through.
UCSB wound up with a 13-6 advantage in shots overall and a 6-4 edge in shots on goal. Brown had four saves for Cal Poly, including a great save of a Murison shot late in the matche. DeWeese had a pair of saves.
The Gauchos will hit the road for the next two matches, traveling to Cal State Fullerton on Thursday, Oct. 24 and Hawai’i on Sunday, Oct. 27. They will return home on Friday, Nov. 1 for a 7:00 p.m. match against UC Riverside.