Oct. 5, 2007
SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - After failing to muster a goal in consecutive non-conference road losses last weekend, a different UC Santa Barbara team showed up for its Big West opener on Friday night at Harder Stadium as the Gauchos dominated two-time defending league tournament champion Cal State Fullerton, winning 2-0.
UCSB, which outshot the Titans by a 21-8 margin, scored its first goal at the 22:06 mark when a rocket by freshman forward Brooke Salyer from about 30 yards out was blocked by Fullerton goalkeeper Shayla Sabin. Sabin deflected Salyer's shot to the right side immediately in front of the goal where another freshman forward, Kailyn Kugler was positioned. Kugler, who finished the match with a career-high six shots, drove the rebound into the lower left side for her third goal of the season.
The Gauchos had another golden opportunity in the 33rd minute when freshman forward Jacqui Simon cracked a shot from just outside the circle at the top of the box, hitting the right goal post. Fullerton had its best opportunity in the 40th minute when Kristen Boujos drove a shot from about 45 yards out and hit the crossbar. Christina Murillo followed Boujos' shot with another well struck shot but UCSB goalkeeper Katie Wright, who injured and missed the team's last match at Gonzaga, made a tremendous diving save.
The score remained 1-0 Santa Barbara for much of the second half, but the Gauchos tacked on an insurance goal at 79:48 when senior defender Katrina Wright dribbled the ball near the left sideline about 40 yards out. Wright sent a pass through traffic to junior forward Michelle Russell who was positioned just to the right of the circle at the top of the box. Russell turned and pounded a shot to Sabin's right, inside the left goalpost to make it 2-0 UCSB.
In addition to Kugler's game-high six shots, Simon had four and four other UCSB players had a pair. The 21 shots were tied a high by a Titan opponent this season. Lauren Cram, Fullerton's leading scorer, had a team-high four shots. Katie Wright had three saves in posting her fourth shutout of the season while Sabin was outstanding with seven saves.
The victory ends a two-game losing streak for the Gauchos. UCSB is now 4-5-2 overall and 1-0 in Big West play. Fullerton, which had won three in a row, is now 6-4-2 overall and 1-1 in league.
The Gauchos continue Big West play on Sunday, Oct. 7, when they host UC Riverside for a 1:00 p.m. contest at Harder Stadium.