LA JOLLA, Calif. - Andrea Lammers’ goal with under a minute remaining in the second overtime sent UC San Diego to a tough 1-0 defeat to Cal State L.A. in California Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA) women’s soccer action on Senior Day Sunday at Triton Soccer Stadium.
CSULA right back Monique Cherry drove down her flank before providing a short crossing pass inside the penalty box, with fellow junior Lammers finding the back of the net with her right-footed shot as the scoreboard clock showed 42 seconds left before the result became a scoreless draw. It was Lammers’ eighth goal of the year.
The loss means that UCSD misses the CCAA Championship for the first time since joining the conference for the 2000 season. The Tritons had qualified for 13 straight installments, and were defending champions, having lifted a record eighth banner a season ago in Carson.
UCSD had to win the match in order to overtake Cal State L.A., one point ahead at the start of the day, for the fourth and final spot in Turlock this week. A tie would have pushed the Golden Eagles through. Lammers’ goal, however, hurts the Tritons’ NCAA Championship hopes. UCSD was still No. 4 in the NCAA’s West Region poll this past Wednesday, with six teams qualifying for the tournament from the West. CSULA, by contrast, was at No. 6.
The Tritons will thus now have to await the NCAA Championship bracket announcement on Monday, Nov. 11, at 4:30 p.m., to see if their season is extended. (Watch live here.)
Sunday’s defeat meant the division rivals split their 2013 home-and-home series, as UCSD took a 3-1 decision in Los Angeles back on Sept. 15
Fourth-year seniors Rachel Leslie (Santee/West Hills HS) and Izzy Pozurama, both team tri-captains this season, and Laura Zellinger, were recognized prior to their final home match at Triton Soccer Stadium. Celebrating a birthday, Zellinger drew her first career start on the right side of midfield.
After a largely uneventful first half, the action picked up after the second-half whistle. UCSD produced a decent opportunity to open the scoring in the 63rd minute when Leslie put a right-footed volley on a left-sided cross by junior All-American Cassie Callahan (Coronado/Coronado HS) that went straight at Yi Du in the CSULA net.
For the visitors in the 70th minute, Janelle Hanna’s header off a Heather Williams corner kick found the underside of the crossbar, but managed to stay out.
Sophomore Triton goalkeeper Kelcie Brodsky made a difficult save of a Williams shot in the 82nd, as the match was extended beyond regulation.
A mere 29 seconds into the first overtime, Brodsky made what appeared at the time to be a game- and potentially season-saving stop, as Norie Pablo took a short pass from Williams on the left, cut her defender in and took a right-footed shot toward the right side of goal that Brodsky dove to her left to parry away.
The match looked to be over with under 10 seconds left in the first extra session, but Lammers’ shot pinged off the left post and again stayed out.
Brodsky wound up with eight saves for the Tritons to equal her season high, while Du had three stops for the Golden Eagles, who held a commanding 22-8 advantage in shots taken.