Lions, Waves Play to 1-1 Tie in WCC Opener
Sorentino gives LMU lead but Pepperdine equalizes in 88th minute
Oct. 9, 2010
LOS ANGELES - Another year, another overtime game for LMU and Pepperdine. For the third straight season and sixth time in the last seven years, the locals rivals needed extra time to decide their West Coast Conference opener, playing to a 1-1 tie on Saturday afternoon at Sullivan Field. Senior Lily Sorentino gave the Lions (8-3-1, 0-0-1 WCC) the lead in the 61st minute but Rebecca Klamser equalized with a long-range stunner two minutes from time to earn the Waves (7-3-4, 0-0-1 WCC) a tie for the second straight season in the matchup.
Saturday's match marked the 19th all-time meeting between the two schools and for the ninth time in the rivalry, 90 minutes of regulation was not enough to settle the score. For awhile, though, it looked like LMU would escape with the win as Sorentino recorded her second goal of the season just past the hour mark. LMU had been pressing the Wave backline all match and finally broke through thanks to a pair of freshmen who provided service for the senior. Darien Pyka's through-ball was perfectly weighted for Tawni Martino, who collected on the right side of the penalty area and crossed to Sorentino. Even with a defender nearby, Sorentino had the easiest of tap-ins inside the six-yard box for her second goal of the season and sixth of her career.
With the clock winding down, it seemed as though Sorentino's goal would stand up as the game-winner until Klamser shocked the hosts with a blistering strike from 40 yards. To that point, LMU's defense and redshirt freshman goalkeeper Brittany Jagger in particular had been stellar, but there was nothing anyone could do about Klamser's shot as she collected a loose ball and fired into the top corner with just two minutes remaining on the clock.
Jagger was unfortunate to not come away with a win as she made several crucial saves to keep the Waves at bay. In the first half, she showed her range by first using quick reflexes to deny a close header from Gunny Jonsdottier in the eighth minute. Jagger later displayed tremendous athleticism when Laura Cole unleashed a 30-yard strike that was heading to the upper corner at the far post before Jagger sprung high to her right to tip over for a corner.
LMU had several chances in a scoreless first half but was unable to break the deadlock. An offensive flurry in a three-minute span around the 17th minute saw seniors Kelley Lawson, Julie Gallaudet, and Nickey Ha all take aim, only to see their attempts fly wide. In the 40th minute, the Lions brought the first save out of Pepperdine goalie Roxanne Barker as she was called into action to keep out Sorentino's shot.
Following Klamser's equalizer, it was the visitors who had more of the run of play, sending five shots at Jagger compared to just one shot for the Lions in the extra 20 minutes. Jagger made her biggest saves of the match on back-to-back Wave attempts during the second overtime period. First, she held her ground in the 102nd minute to collect Callie Payetta's point-blank header after the Wave player flicked-on a long throw. Two minutes later, Jagger was quick off her line to deny the Waves a game-winner as Anisa Guajardo was sent through for a one-on-one but Jagger went low to her right to keep the game tied.
Jagger finished the match with seven saves while Barker had four for the Waves. Pepperdine held a 19-13 advantage on shots and a 6-4 edge in corner kicks. The tie means that the two schools split a point in the PCH Challenge, a season-long competition encompassing all NCAA sports between the two rivals separated by just 19.1 miles.
LMU continues WCC play on the road next week, traveling to the Pacific Northwest for a pair of matches before returning to Sullivan Field for three of the final regular season matches. On Friday, the Lions visit #3 Portland at 7:30 p.m. Then it's off to Spokane and a Sunday noon meeting with Gonzaga.