Women's Soccer

Gallaudet Golden Goal Topples Titans in OT, 1-0

Junior Brittney Sanford provided her third assist of the season. (Photo by Jeff Sipsey)
Junior Brittney Sanford provided her third assist of the season. (Photo by Jeff Sipsey)

Oct. 1, 2010

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Click here for post-game interviews with Joe Mallia and Julie Gallaudet.

LOS ANGELES - Senior Julie Gallaudet scored the game-winning goal 3:41 into overtime to give LMU a 1-0 victory over Cal State Fullerton in the team's non-conference finale Friday afternoon at Sullivan Field. The win sends the Lions (8-3-0) into West Coast Conference play with the momentum of having won four of their last five, all via shutout, while winning their second in a row in the series against the Titans (3-7-0).

LMU dominated on offense all day and could have had several goals if it were not for the play of Titan goalie Jessica Change. The Lions out-shot Cal State Fullerton 14-6 on the day but Change made seven saves, several of the one-on-one variety, to maintain a scoreless game after 90 minutes.

The Lions' pressure would finally wilt the Fullerton defense as the overtime period got underway, forcing a pair of corners that would lead to Gallaudet's opener. From the overtime kick-off, LMU immediately went on the attack and won a corner on the right side. Junior Brittany Sanford swung in the cross and it was met by freshman Etajha Gilmer, whose header beat Change but was headed off the line by a Titan defender for another corner. This time, Sanford's in-swinger looked to be going in, forcing Change to paw it off the goalline. The ball caromed back off the crossbar and straight down to Gallaudet, who poked it home from a yard out for what was probably the closest goal of her career.

Gallaudet's goal was her second of the season and 12th of her career, moving her into a tie for 10th place alongside Katie Osborne (2004-07) on the LMU all-time list. It was also points 41 and 42 of Gallaudet's illustrious career, which puts her alone in fifth place on that school chart.

At 8-3-0, the Lions have recorded their best non-conference season since 2007, when they went 8-3-1, and the fifth-best non-conference mark in program history. The Lions have won eight of their last 10 and have recorded shutouts in each of the last six victories.

From the opening kick-off, the Lions controlled the tempo, putting continuous pressure on the Titan defense. LMU held a 5-2 shot advantage in the first half and should have broken through except Change was on her game to keep the Lions off the board. Just minutes in, Change was quick off her line to beat senior Kelley Lawson to a through-ball that would have left Lawson with an empty net. In the 12th minute, Change showed similar anticipation to charge down freshman Tawni Martino's one-on-one attack after Martino had outpaced two defenders.

LMU's best opportunity in the first half came off a corner in the 37th minute. Sanford's delivery was again a good one and sophomore Jordan Nelson rose up, sending her header to the top right corner. Change stretched and got a hand to it, pushing it on to the post and it was cleared away, keeping the game scoreless at the half.

Martino had a golden chance five minutes after the break when Kellie Bohner gave away possession, sending Martino through on goal. With Change retreating back, Martino tried to chip her but Change recovered to make the diving stop.

Martino continued to be involved as the Lions increased their offensive pressure. Her pace was at the heart of LMU's next chance in the 65th minute as she charged down the left flank and beat her defender, crossing to a wide-open Gallaudet just outside the box. Gallaudet's first touch took her back toward the defense and her shot was blocked. The rebound came out to Lawson, whose long-range effort sailed high.

Three minutes later, Martino found herself unmarked in the box on a long throw but Change was again there to deny her right-footed volley.

With both teams pushing forward looking for the game-winner, it opened play up for counter-attacks. After a Titan appeal for a free kick was waved off, senior Nickey Ha released Lawson down the left with a beautifully-weighted pass. Yet, as had been the theme all day, Change went low to her left to corral the shot.

At the end of the day, Gallaudet would get the game-winner in support of freshman Brittany Jagger, who recorded a single save for her sixth shutout of the season. Each of Jagger's last six victories have come via the clean sheet to put her in a tie for ninth on LMU's single-season record list with Kelly Yukihiro, who also had six shutouts in 2004.

The Lions open up West Coast Conference play next Saturday, hosting local rivals Pepperdine at 1 p.m.




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