Nov. 9, 2008
LONG BEACH, Calif. - For the second time in as many Big West Tournament matches, the UC Santa Barbara women's soccer team played a contest that was decided by penalty kicks, and for the second straight time, the Gauchos won. On Sunday, they tied Long Beach State 1-1 through regulation and two overtimes, then earned an NCAA Tournament bid and their first-ever conference tournament title by topping the 49ers in a shootout, 6-5.
The teams not only went to a shootout, but to a sudden-victory shootout. After the required five attempts, UCSB and LBSU were knotted at 4-4. The Gauchos missed their first attempt, but the 49ers missed their fourth to even things out. After each team made their fifth and sixth attempts, Santa Barbara's Emily Ohlhaver missed, giving Long Beach's Kristen Kiefer an opportunity to send her team to the title. It didn't happen, and the teams went to an eighth shot.
Freshman Alissa Sanchez took UCSB's eighth shot and guided it past Long Beach's Breanna Truelove. The 49ers' Yeraldy Hurtado was next, looking to send the shootout to a nail-biting ninth shot. Hurtado's shot, however, went wide, sending the Gauchos into a wild celebration and on to their first NCAA Tournament since 1991 and first-ever under 10th-year head coach Paul Stumpf.
Long Beach State (14-4-4) responded with a goal of its own less than three minutes later. At the 52:56 mark, Bo Rael took a free kick from the right side of the field and Mariko Strickland headed it to Dana Farquhar who scored from the top of the box. Farquhar tallied her second goal of the season, while Strickland added her team-high sixth assist.
The 49ers outshot the Gauchos 19-13 and had the advantage in shots on goal (9-7). UCSB was paced by Kailyn Kugler who had five shots, two on-goal. Genelle Ives had three. Kristen Kiefer, Lindsay Bullock, and Farquhar took three shots apiece for Long Beach. Freshman goalkeeper Ali Cutler recorded eight saves for Santa Barbara. Senior goalkeeper Liz Ramos made six saves for Long Beach.
On Thursday night, the Gauchos tied Cal Poly 1-1, and won in a shootout, 5-4. On Sunday, UCSB's successful penalty kicks came off the feet of Jacqui Simon, Kailyn Kugler, Cory Yoshida, Sarah Stoltz, Kacey Doherty, and Sanchez.
UCSB will find out where it is going in the NCAA Tournament on Monday. The NCAA Tournament Selection Show will air live on ESPN News from 5-5:30 p.m (PST).