No. 11 UC San Diego Runs Away From Cal State LA in Second Half, Returns to Top of CCAA Standings
LA JOLLA, Calif. - Eleventh-ranked University of California San Diego got three incredible goals from its senior forward tandem in a second-half tour de force, and raced past Cal State LA, 3-0, in California Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA) women's soccer action at Triton Soccer Stadium on Friday night.
With a fourth straight shutout victory since its lone defeat, UC San Diego moved to 13-1-1 overall and 8-1 in the CCAA. The Tritons took over sole possession of first place in the league standings, clinched a fifth successive CCAA Tournament berth, and assured itself of at least one postseason home game, as no worse than the No. 4 seed for that event. Cal State LA fell to 8-4-2 overall and 4-3-2 in league play.
Mary Reilly (Chula Vista/Hilltop HS), the reigning national and conference Player of the Week for the second time this season, finally opened the scoring at 48:37, shortly after a rousing halftime speech by coach Kristin Jones. She completed her brace at 57:07, and turned provider in the 67th minute as starting strike partner and fellow fourth-year Triton senior Megumi Barber (San Diego/Mt. Carmel HS) added to her personal highlight reel with a one-timed left-footer from 18 yards.
A third fourth-year senior, first-time co-captain Summer Bales, was credited with assists on the second and third goals, increasing her league-leading total to seven while also matching her single-season career high from 2017. Fellow co-captain Natalie Saddic (San Diego/Torrey Pines HS) assisted on Reilly's opener, her second.
Redshirt junior goalkeeper Angelica Ramos did not have to make a save over the first 23:33 for UC San Diego. She was forced to leave with a cut above her eye, with sophomore Katie Wilkes making a pair of stops the rest of the way as the duo combined on the Tritons' seventh shutout of 2018. Senior Adriana Maldonado had five saves for the visitors.
UC San Diego held a 10-2 shot advantage at the break, but could not find the opening. Reilly came closest, with her initial attempt going right at Maldonado in just the sixth minute, and a right-footed slow roller getting cleared before crossing the goal line by junior defender Adyson Willett in the 22nd.
In the 49th, sophomore left back Delaney Whittet played the ball forward for Saddic, who sped up the field and across the halfway line before finding Reilly. Reilly juked and dribbled toward her right, perfectly cut the defender marking her onto her left, and caught Maldonado off her line, lifting a left-footer from 22 yards for a 1-0 lead.
Less than 10 minutes later, redshirt junior center back Kelsey Kimball plugged a Cal State LA attack down the middle of the park, and Saddic fed the ball forward with a left-footed first touch. Reilly stole it from Yaqualin Garcia and played back to Bales, who gave it right back to her. Reilly turned a defender and again dribbled several times up the field toward the right. With Maldonado curiously too far off to one side, Reilly made her pay again, picking her head up from outside of 25 yards, and drilling a right-footed shot into the wide-open bottom left corner to double the advantage.
A left-sided Cal State LA cross evaded two Golden Eagles ahead of the capper. Bales was first to it on the left edge of the box, and with her second touch, sent a killer left-footed pass well up the field. Reilly ran onto it, took two touches toward the penalty area, and provided a square pass into the middle. From the literal edge of the 18-yard box, Barber chipped a first-timed, left-footed shot that looped over Maldonado, once again a bit too far off her goal line. Reilly and Bales both received credit for assists as the seniors combined, Reilly's her first of 2018 and 20th of her career.
UC San Diego out-shot Cal State LA on the night, 21-5, with Reilly collecting game highs of six total and five on goal. She continues to lead the CCAA in shots, goals, game-winning goals and points. The Tritons held reigning CCAA Offensive Player of the Year and Freshman of the Year Paulina Chaidez without a single shot attempt.
Reilly has scored in three straight games, with Barber's third snapping her string of being the provider of four successive Triton goals. She has been behind the last three game-winners. Friday marked Reilly's second multi-goal effort of 2018, and seventh of her college career. Barber has three goals in all against Cal State LA, out of her 10 total, including her first back as a true freshman in La Jolla on Sept. 14, 2015, the 76th-minute decider on the same frame on the north side in a 2-1 victory.
The game was played in front of 472 spectators on UC San Diego Homecoming, including as always, very strong support, behind the north goal this year, where all three Triton goals were scored, by the UC San Diego women's soccer alumnae.
UC San Diego hosts Cal State Dominguez Hills for one final regular-season home game on Senior Day this Sunday, Oct. 21, at 2 p.m. Five seniors will be recognized starting at approximately 1:50 p.m., though that time could be delayed if the men's game goes long. Parking and admission are free, or watch live on UCSDtritons.tv.
Triton Notes: UC San Diego leads the all-time series, 21-11-2, with four straight victories by an aggregate score of 10-0, including back-to-back 3-0 score lines ... The Tritons returned to their regular starting lineup after making their first change at Cal Poly Pomona last Sunday, with sophomore Natalie Widmer back from injury at right back ... Mary Reilly has 45 goals and 110 total points as a Triton ... Reilly remains alone in fifth place in the UC San Diego record book in both goals and points ... Reilly's season-by-season goal totals are 11 as a freshman, a career-high 13 as a sophomore, nine a year ago, and 12 now as a senior ... Reilly has a career-best six game-winning goals in 2018, and 17 for her career ... UC San Diego finished with 20-plus shots as a team for the sixth time ... The Tritons remain perfect at home this season, at 7-0 ... This is a season-best four straight shutouts for UC San Diego ... The Tritons are CCAA Tournament qualifiers for the 18th time out of 19 seasons since joining, as record 11-time and back-to-back-to-back champions.
About UC San Diego Athletics
With 30 national team championships, nearly 150 individual titles and the top student-athlete graduation rate among Division II institutions in the United States, the UC San Diego intercollegiate athletics program annually ranks as one of the most successful in the country. The Tritons sponsor 23 intercollegiate sport programs that compete on the NCAA Division I and II levels and, in summer 2020, will transition into full Division I status as a member of the Big West Conference. UC San Diego student-athletes exemplify the academic ideals of one of the world's preeminent institutions, graduating at an average rate of 91 percent. A total of 80 Tritons have earned Academic All-America honors, while 36 have earned prestigious NCAA Postgraduate Scholarships. In competition, more than 1,300 UC San Diego student-athletes have earned All-America honors.
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