Sept. 27, 2006
SANTA CLARA, Calif. - Coming off of a weekend of emotional highs which saw them rout the then-third-ranked UCLA Bruins 3-0 on Friday, before shutting out the then-No. 14 CS Fullerton Titans 2-0 Sunday, the No. 3 Santa Clara women's soccer team heads into another spirited match this Saturday night as they host the No. 18 Stanford Cardinal at 7 p.m. at Buck Shaw Stadium.
Tickets to Saturday night's match are available by calling (408) 554-4660 or by clicking here.
The third-ranked Broncos (8-2-0) are riding high off of their best offensive outputs of the season last weekend, as forward Meagan Snell led the assault with a pair of goals in Friday's win over UCLA, netting her team-leading sixth and seventh goals of the year and earning herself WCC Co-Player of the Week honors and a spot on Soccer America's National Team of the Week in the process. Marian Dalmy was the star in Sunday's win over the Titans, netting her first two goals of the year, with the second coming on a penalty kick, to account for the match's scoring and earn herself a spot on the Soccer Buzz Elite National Team of the Week.
"Meagan is just riding a wonderful wave of momentum in terms of confidence and there's nothing better than being confident for a goal scorer," said head coach Jerry Smith. "She has scored so many important goals for the team, so getting the first and third goal for us against UCLA was absolutely critical."
On the defensive side of things, the foursome of Dalmy, Hillary Schwarzbach, Dani Potts, and Lauren Zealear on the back line with goalkeepers Meagan McCray and Julie Ryder in net combined for the team's sixth and seventh shutouts of the year last weekend. The 3-0 defeat of UCLA marked the first time this year that the Bruins had failed to score in a match, as the back line clamped down on UCLA star forwards Danesha Adams and Lauren Cheney.
"Our defensive performance against UCLA was huge. I knew that we were going to have chances to score against UCLA, the bigger question for us was whether or not we could shut them down defensively, and I thought the back line couldn't have played any better," Smith noted of the defensive effort against the Bruins. "You can't play a team like UCLA with so many great attacking weapons and not give up chances at goal, but we didn't let them get behind us and didn't give them much success in putting themselves in one-on-one positions."
This weekend, things will get tense as the Broncos enter Saturday's contest with the Cardinal (7-3-0) seeking to avenge last season's 1-0 loss at The Farm in the Stanford Nike Classic. This season, the Cardinal, behind a defense anchored by Rachel Buehler and Marissa Abegg, have won seven of their past eight matches by shutout after dropping their first two contests to Utah and Wake Forest at the Santa Clara adidas Classic in late August. Freshman Kelley O'Hara, a member of the U.S. Under-20 National Team that played in the FIFA World Championships earlier this month in Russia, has scored three goals since returning to the Cardinal, while senior midfielder Shari Summers leads the squad with six goals and 12 points on the year.
"I think this will be another great match in the Santa Clara-Stanford rivalry, so I expect that there would be a big crowd with a number of supporters from each school there," Smith said in looking ahead to Saturday's match. "A couple games we've played against Stanford in the last few years, they've really been trying to play a good defensive game against us, but now they have some really good attacking weapons, so I think both teams will be attacking the other and it will be a much more entertaining game than it has been in past years."
Following this weekend's action, the Broncos will remain home at Buck Shaw Stadium next week to close out the five-match homestand with a 7 p.m. Rivalry Series battle Wednesday, Oct. 4 against San Jose State before beginning West Coast Conference play on Sunday, Oct. 8 at 1 p.m. against the San Diego Toreros.