Oct. 2, 2011
SANTA BARBARA, CA - Cal State Fullerton sophomore Kishi Smith converted her first career penalty kick opportunity just under four minutes into the first overtime period Sunday afternoon, breaking a 1-1 deadlock and lifting the visiting Titans to a, 2-1, extra-time Big West Conference women's soccer victory over host UC Santa Barbara at Harder Stadium.
"I am extremely proud of the fight the women showed today," fifth-year Head Coach Demian Brown said. "After a difficult result on Friday night, we gutted out a great win on the road today."
Fullerton improved to 6-5-2 overall with the win and evened its conference record at 1-1 overall after the first weekend of play. For the Titans, it was their school record-tying eighth overtime match of the season and their third straight contest in extra time -- matching a feat that hadn't been done since 1994. Fullerton improved to 3-3-2 overall in overtime in 2011, snapping a two-match losing streak to the Gauchos in the process and winning for the first time in Santa Barbara since 2005.
UCSB fell to 5-7-2 overall and 0-2 in Big West play, falling in overtime for the second consecutive match.
All of the scoring in the match came late as both teams scored in the final nine minutes of regulation to set up Smith's heroics in the 94th minute. The Gauchos, who lost to Long Beach State on a penalty kick following a handball in the box on Friday night, fell victim to the exact same call on Sunday. Put on the spot, Smith powered her second game-winning strike of the season -- and her third goal overall in 2011 -- past goalkeeper Makenna Henry for the 2-1 victory.
The match was scoreless into the 82nd minute before UC Santa Barbara struck for the first goal of the match. Katy Roby's corner kick was punched out of the area by Fullerton keeper Lindsey Maricic, but not far enough out of the reach of Alexa Stringer, who went to her right and tapped the ball to teammate Indiana Mead. The freshman then one-timed a shot into the center of the net for her second of the year and a 1-0 lead.
Five minutes later, Fullerton found the equalizer off the head of junior Stacey Fox in the 87th minute as Smith, who had just entered the game, sent a corner from the left side into the area where it missed a clearing attempt by Henry and fell right to Fox, who headed it home into the upper right corner to make it 1-1. It was Fox's second goal of the season and her first since scoring late against Pepperdine on Aug. 26 at Titan Stadium.
The Titans came close to scoring minutes before the Gauchos broke up the scoreless deadlock, getting three shots from point-blank range, two of which were headed off the line by Roby and a third that was smothered by Henry.
Despite being outshot, 17-15, for the match, Fullerton put nine of its 15 on frame to just seven for UCSB and received five saves from Maricic in the win. Smith finished with four shots on the day, tying for match-high honors with the Gauchos' Roby and Mead.
Cal State Fullerton closes out its longest stretch on the road this season next Sunday (Oct. 9) as the Titans head to archrival Long Beach State for a 3 p.m. kickoff at Allen Field. The match has been pushed back from its originally scheduled time of 1 p.m. due to the Long Beach Marathon taking place on that day.