Oct. 28, 2007
SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - The UC Santa Barbara women's soccer team saluted its seven seniors prior to an Oct. 200 home game against Cal Poly. On Sunday afternoon, playing her final home match as a Gaucho, defender Kandice Mclaughlin gave the seniors more cause for celebration when her first half goal off of a free kick stood-up to give UCSB (6-8-4 overall, 3-2-1 in the Big West) a 1-0 Big West win over visiting UC Davis (6-11-0 overall, 1-6-0 in the Big West).
UCSB put the only score on the board in the 38th minute when midfielder Sami Svrcek was fouled as she drove towards the upper right corner of the box. McLaughlin, who scored three goals off of free kicks in 2006, took this one from just above the right corner rifling a shot over the UC Davis wall and just under the crossbar in the upper right corner of the goal. Aggie goalkeeper Sarah Peters may have been screened on the shot and her last ditch leap was in vain and McLaughlin had her first goal of the season.
The Gauchos had also threatened in the 12th minute when forward Kailyn Kugler drove up the right sideline. She centered a ball to forward Michelle Russell who flicked the ball to forward Jacqui Simon at the center of the box. Simon lofted a shot that eluded Peters' reach but also sailed just over the crossbar.
UC Davis had a chance to seize the lead in the 31st minute when midfielder Gabina Bohlman got her head on a centering pass and deflected the ball towards the goal. UCSB goalkeeper Katie Wright, however, was in position and made the save.
The Aggies final threat was also their most dangerous. After a foul outside the right portion of the box, forward Marisa Boge crossed a free kick into the box in front of Wright. Megan Wall, who had come in from her midfield position, jumped into the mix and headed a shot to the far right corner of the goal. The ball, however, skimmed off the crossbar and was cleared by the Gaucho defense.
As it has for most of the season, the UCSB defense was stellar, allowing just seven total shots, two of which were on goal. Katie Wright needed just two saves in victory as she recorded her eighth shutout of the season and 14th of her career.
Offensively, McLaughlin's goal ended a scoreless streak that had reached nearly 390 minutes. Defensively, however, the Gauchos have now allowed just one goal in their last 445 minutes.
The victory gives UCSB 10 points in the league standings. UC Irvine, which entered the day's action having played one fewer game than the Gauchos, has nine points pending the outcome of their game at Cal State Fullerton Sunday afternoon. The teams are battling for the fourth and final spot in the 2007 Big West Tournament that will be held on Nov. 9 and Nov. 11. Santa Barbara will conclude the regular next weekend when it travels to Cal State Northridge on Friday, Nov. 2 and Long Beach State on Sunday, Nov. 4.