Women of Troy Open 2013 With A Bang, Beating No. 11 SDSU 4-1|
Aug 23, 2013
SAN DIEGO, CALIF. -- The USC women's soccer team made an emphatic early-season statement today with an dominating 4-1 win to upset No. 11 San Diego State in the Trojans' season opener at Torero Stadium in San Diego. USC was in control throughout, and quickly made a 1-0 halftime lead a solid 3-0 advantage with goals three minutes apart from freshman Kayla Mills and sophomore Jamie Fink. Senior Elizabeth Eddy bookended those blast in scoring USC's first and last goals of the match as the Women of Troy locked in on a decisive winning start to 2013.
Just six minutes into the action, Elizabeth Eddy delivered a shot that glanced off SDSU goalkeeper Melanie Vaughn and trickled over the line. Up 1-0 on their ranked opponents, the Trojans' confidence and intensity surged. Defensively, the USC's starting back line of Marlee Carrillo, Mia Bruno, Mandy Freeman and Autumn Altamirano did a good job of limiting work for goalkeeper Caroline Stanley. Stanley was called to action for three saves in the game, including a particularly nice stop on an Aztec header in the 25th minute of play.
In the second half, the Trojan pressure cranked up further. USC generated four corner kicks in the opening minutes of the half, and though they didn't convert, they certainly came close. Maree Carrillo got a good head on one opportunity, but it was blocked in the 54th minute. Three minutes earlier, Kayla Mills had sent a nice centering pass in for Haley Boysen, who got a great look and foot on the ball only to have it knock off the post.
In the 55th minute, the USC pressure finally broke the SDSU defense. Or rather, Kayla Mills broke the SDSU defense largely on her own. The freshman carried the ball through on the attack and fizzed one in to the low left post to notch her first goal as a Trojan in the 55th minute. Barely three minutes later, Mills was at it again. This time, she fought through two SDSU defenders and sailed in a cross from the left, finding an eager Jamie Fink on the other end who made the most of the opportunity with a perfect header to the back post to take the Trojans ahead 3-0 on the Aztecs.
SDSU would rob the Trojans of a shutout 12 minutes later when Hannah Keane took one from distance, redirecting it off a USC defender to roll out of reach of a diving Stanley. That made it 3-1 with 21 minutes still led to play, but USC was not yet done. The Aztecs earned their only corner kick of the second half with two minutes left. Stanley would punch the ball away to the right, where Mandy Freeman was able to bring it under control. Freeman launched a long ball downfield for a sprinting Eddy, whose speed was all it took. The senior finished off the slick USC counterattack with a slicing score to the right corner, and USC was in the books with a 4-1 lead in the 89th minute to finish off the No. 11 Aztecs.
USC -- which finished the game outshooting SDSU 16-9 -- had opened the game with two freshmen in the starting lineup. Freeman and Mills got their first starts as Trojans, and were soon joined by five other USC newcomers making their Trojan debuts. Natalie Samarzich clocked in during the first half, and by the final whistle fellow Trojan newcomers Dominique Randle, Natalie Donaldson, Rachel Smith and Moriah Earley had also logged their first minutes in Cardinal and Gold.
USC now turns to face host San Diego in a 1:30 p.m. clash against the Toreros on Sunday (August 25) at Torero Stadium.
USC 4, #11 San Diego State 1
SAVES: Caroline Stanley (USC) 3, Melanie Vaughn (SDSU) 3