With a 2-1 win over Ottawa (Ariz.) (12-4-2) Westmont Women’s Soccer (14-0-3) claimed the Golden State Athletic Conference Tournament Championship on Thorrington Field.
“It is a pretty big day for the team,” said Westmont head coach Jenny Jaggard. “Winning the title is always an exciting thing and I told the seniors that this is our 50th win together. It’s an exciting way to do it.”
Jaggard is now 50-11-9 (.779) in her four years leading the team.
Reese Davidson scored her 17th goal of the season in the 27th minute to put the Warriors on top 1-0. Davidson received a pass from Grace Duckens at the top of the box, took a touch left to avoid a defender, then fired inside the near post.
In the 32nd minute, Daisy Alvarez connected for her first goal of the season, just seven minutes later. Taylie Scott took a free kick from the left side and sent it in front of the goal. The ball rebounded off a Spirit defender before Alvarez shot it into the left side of the net.
“We definitely found some flow,” assessed Jaggard. “They are a tough team to play against. In the first 15, there was no rhythm. It took us a while to figure out how to close those gaps and play the kind of game we wanted.
Ottawa’s goal came in the 56th minute. Cassidi Calzaretta took a shot that was blocked, but rebounded out to Paige Murray-Hernandez who put it in the goal.
“There were a couple of opportunities that I thought we were a little off on our timing today,” noted Jaggard, “but we still got two good goals. It is a pretty big day for the team.
“We had some scary moments and I wish we could have finished a couple more of our opportunities,” reflected Jaggard. “I thought we did a good job in the last 15 of managing the game, bringing the ball back to the ground and managing the clock.”
When the final horn sounded, the team rushed together to celebrate with an exuberant team hug. They also joined together for an iconic team heel click and then a traditional wave to their boisterous fans before soaking their coach with a cooler full of ice water.
Following Jaggard’s bath, the team was introduced one-by-one and handed a tee-shirt celebrating their accomplishments. Then the team captains were presented with the title trophy. The team, their families and fans hung out on the field for a long time, absorbing the joy of shared success.
With the win, Westmont also secured an automatic berth in the NAIA National Championship, which begins on Thursday. The Warriors will learn Monday morning where and whom they will play in the first two rounds. The only thing that Westmont knows for certain is that they have already played their final match on Thorrington Field for this season.
It was certainly a memorable way to finish.