Sept. 11, 2009
Box Score | Photo Gallery
SANTA CLARA, Calif. - The Santa Clara women's soccer team made a statement to the nation this evening; the Broncos are back. Santa Clara ushered in two goals, one in each half, and went on to defeat 2008 College Cup Finalist No. 5 Notre Dame in front of 2,133 fans at Buck Shaw Stadium in the second match of the Santa Clara Classic to improve to 4-2-0 on the season.
The win did not come easy for the Broncos, as they had to rely on sophomore goalkeeper Bianca Henninger and the rest of the Santa Clara defense to be on their A-game.
Henninger was called upon for her first of three saves just minutes into the match, stifling Rose Augustin's point-blank shot.
"Notre Dame could have easily gotten a goal tonight, but I thought Bianca made a lot of real nice saves in both the beginning and end of the game," said head coach Jerry Smith.
The netminder out of Los Gatos, Calif. came up big again at 16:10, turning away Molly Campbell's attack. Then, in the 24th minute, redshirt senior Jordan Angeli broke the ice.
Notre Dame commited a foul about 40 yards out from the goal, and was preparing for a flighted service from senior Kiki Bosio. Bosio instead passed to Angeli, who unleased a 35-yard rocket that streaked by Irish goalkeeper Nikki Weiss into the upper portion of the net.
The Broncos carried the 1-0 lead into the second half, ending the period with 6-1 advantage in corner kicks but trailing Notre Dame in shots 5-3.
"I told team at half that we can't settle for a one goal lead and sit back, that we've got to push for second goal," said Smith.
The Irish made a change in net for the second half, inserting goalkeeper Kelsey Lysander. Play was calmer in the beginning of the half comparitively to the prior 45 minutes, with Santa Clara controlling much of it.
At 62:06, the Broncos struck again. This time it was freshman Lauren Matheson, who knocked home a cross from junior Kendra Perry after classmate Amanda Webster deceived her defender with a dummy run. Matheson's finish beat Lysander low and hard to give Santa Clara a 2-0 lead.
"I was most happy when we got the second goal," said Smith. "It was a quailty attack and finish, and we pushed for that goal, we weren't satisified to just hold on with one."
The Broncos continued to apply pressure, holding most of the possesion, and many of Notre Dame's chances did not come until late in the half when things got desperate. Many Irish chances went high or wide, and Bosio made one defense save on a close play from inside the penalty spot as Santa Clara held on to earn its third shutout victory of the year.
"When you have the chance to play a team like Notre Dame, with all their history and nine appearances in the College Cup Final, and a great coach like Randy Waldrum, and the fact that they played in the final last year...and get a win, you're always really happy," said Smith.
"I thought we looked more composed than we have," said Smith. "We've been frantic sometimes ... the girls are trying to work hard and play with a good speed of play and sometimes that turns into more frantic soccer but tonight we were more subtle and settled the ball well as good teams need to. We did that well but not for as long of a stretch as I would like and that's credit to Notre Dame. They put a lot of pressure on us."
The Broncos finished with a 10-8 edge in shots and a 10-2 advantage on corner kicks. In addition, freshman Allie Vernon recorded her first collegiate minutes in a Santa Clara uniform. The Broncos will finish up play in the Santa Clara Classic on Sunday at 1:30 p.m. when it takes on another team from Indiana, No. 7 Purdue who lost 2-1 to No. 3 Stanford earlier this evening on the Mission Campus.