USC Slips 2-1 At No. 23 Portland
Sept. 18, 2011
PORTLAND, ORE. - The USC women's soccer team got stuck with another tight loss after another strong performance in nonconference action. The Women of Troy put together a tough effort against No. 23 host Portland on Sunday afternoon, but the Pilots managed early goals in each half on the way to a 2-1 loss for the Trojans. USC goes to 3-6-0 overall with Pac-12 play coming up next week. Portland improves to 4-4-1 with today's win.
USC was forced to play catch up after just three minutes of play when Portland got deep in Trojan territory, with a cross coming into the box where Amanda Frisbie backheeled the ball to Ellen Parker for a powerful shot to the back of the net. Portland settled back a bit from there, and USC was able to push back and create some opportunities next. In the 29th minute of action, Claire Schloemer pushed the ball up for a charging Elizabeth Eddy. Eddy got a foot on the ball for a shot that was blocked by a Pilot defender, and Ashley Freyer was there to gather in and finish the chance in front of the goal.
Twelve minutes later, USC goalkeeper Shelby Church and defender Autumn Altamirano combined forces to stop another dangerous Portland attack. Church made the initial save on a shot, and the rebound was taken by a Portland striker for a shot on goal that Altamirano was there to stop. Ashli Sandoval, too, would come up big with stops against Portland strikes, and she would even add one of USC's best chances to add to its goal count, driving a booming blast on goal and just off the crossbar later in the half. Brittany Kerridge wrapped up the half with an impressive sliding tackle to knock away a Portland breakaway, and the scoreboard was an even 1-1 for halftime.
The Pilots would jump out on the attack early in the second stanza as well. Another deep run saw Micaela Capelle force her way on goal to adjust the USC back line, shoving the ball left to Frisbie at the last moment for an open look on goal and a tap in to get Portland ahead 2-1 in the 49th minute of play. Another equalizer stayed stubbornly out of reach of the Trojans the rest of the way, however, although USC stuck even with the Pilots in the shot count in the second half. A foul on Freyer in the final minute of play set up Kerridge for a free kick about 30 yards out. She sent in a good ball, but the Portland keeper hauled in the ball as Kristina Noriega arrived to try for a play on it, and USC would get stuck with its sixth loss of the nonconference regular season.
The Women of Troy now return home to kick off their Pac-12 season with a 1 p.m. match against Washington State on Sunday (Sept. 25).
Sept. 18, 2011 - Portland, Ore.
SAVES: Shelby Church (USC) 2, Team (USC) 1, Hailee DeYoung (PORT) 3.
SHOTS: USC 9, PORT 13
CORNER KICKS: USC 1, PORT 3
FOULS: USC 6, PORT 6