No. 1 Stanford Sneaks Away With Overtime Win Under the Lights|
Oct. 26, 2012
LOS ANGELES, CALIF. -- Tonight's battle between the only two Pac-12 teams to win an NCAA women's soccer championship lived up to its billing. The 2007 champs took the 2011 champs down to the wire before top-ranked Stanford caught a late break. After an apparent USC goal in the second overtime was nullified by an offsides call, the Cardinal would regroup and manage a late winner in the 103rd minute to tally a 1-0 win over the Trojans at the Los Angeles Coliseum. USC goes to 5-9-3 overall and 2-5-2 in Pac-12 play with the tough loss, while No. 1 Stanford improves to 15-1-1, 9-0-0.
USC's possession game was on point tonight as the Trojans took it to the Cardinal from the opening kick. Stanford would out-shoot USC in the game, but the quality chances were evenly matched as the Trojans created some stellar opportunities and challenges on goal. USC's hard work would force overtime -- the eighth of the year for the Trojans, but just the second of the year for Stanford.
In the first overtime frame, USC was all business. Just one minute into OT, USC got deep in Cardinal territory and the ball got to Jordan Marada in the box. She was there for the finish, blasting the ball to the back of the net. The celebration began on the USC sidelines, but the drama was not over. The referee's whistle had blown on an offisides flag held by the linesman, and the teams were called to return to the field and restart play. USC kept pushing, and Samantha Johnson got a good feed from Elizabeth Eddy for a strong shot on goal that was saved by Stanford goalkeeper Emily Oliver. The rest of the frame would pass without a score, however, bringing up the second overtime. There, Stanford would find its winning touch when a USC foul set up a free kick in the 103rd minute. Rachel Quon took the kick, finding Mariah Nogueira for the flick and Alina Garciamendez with the finish to end the match as a Stanford victory. That was the only chink that the Cardinal was able to find in an otherwise stout defensive armor sported by the Trojans. Every member of the USC midfield and back line was stalwart in stubbornly turning away every other Cardinal attack.
USC now turns to another home match on Sunday (Oct. 28) for a 1 p.m. face-off against No. 21 California back at McAlister Field.
#1 Stanford 1, USC 0 (2OT)
SAVES: Caroline Stanley (USC) 7, Emily Oliver (STAN) 6
SHOTS: USC 12, STAN 25
CORNER KICKS: USC 3, STAN 10
FOULS: USC 9, STAN 7