Matador Women's Soccer Prepares for Southern Utah Before Traveling to Bakersfield

Aug. 27, 2008


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Fresh off the theatrics of a double-overtime season-opening victory, the Cal State Northridge women's soccer team regroups Friday to face Southern Utah before hitting the road for the first time with a match at Cal State Bakersfield. The Matadors displayed balanced scoring in their victory over San Diego State: four seniors and two freshmen registered points against the Aztecs.

The Matadors will battle Southern Utah at 11:30 a.m. in the first game of three games scheduled at the Matador Soccer Field. Following the game, men's action begins as Cal State Fullerton faces Alabama A&M followed by Northridge against Georgetown. Northridge will make the trip to Bakersfield for a 7 p.m. game.

Still, perhaps the biggest story surrounding the win over SDSU, the team's second straight in the series, was the play of Leah Elliott. The sophomore had four days to train for her first start in net in nearly three years after learning the top two keepers would miss the season. She responded with a four-save performance, earning the victory.

On offense, a pair of seniors scored the goals, but a pair of freshmen also picked up points in their first game. Rookies Brielle Slepicoff and Nancy Avesyan each recorded an assist on senior Nalena Betancourt's game winner in the 106th minute. Avesyan started the match for the Matadors, while Slepicoff fired a shot on goal.

The four veteran seniors each found a way to contribute to the game, some with record book implications. Senior Tryna Tafoya moved into a tie for third in school history with her 10th career assist, helping out fellow senior Kristal Phillips bury the game-tying goal in the 62nd minute. In turn, Phillips now stands one point shy of 10th in school history with 21 career points (7 G, 7 A).

Also picking up an assist on Phillips' goal was senior Tinamarie Lutizetti. It was her third career assist. Finally, Betancourt pushed in the goal to lead CSUN to a come-from-behind victory in double overtime.

The Eagles of Southern Utah started off the 2008 season facing another Big West Conference opponent, dropping a 5-0 decision to UC Riverside on Aug. 22. Shaley Ipson-Allen led the team with four shots against the Highlanders, while Kristen Fronk finished with a pair of shots. Under eighth-year head coach Brian Stock, the Eagles were picked to finish sixth in The Summit League.

So far in 2008, Cal State Bakersfield has split a pair of matches in the first week of the season, defeating Idaho, 2-1, in overtime before falling to UC Riverside, 4-0. Freshman Veronica Ramos scored the game winner against the Vandals in the 102nd minute of action. Sarina Coutin scored the other Runner goal in the game.

Next week, Northridge has one match, hosting UNLV on Sept. 5 at 4:30 p.m.