Early Goal, Defense Lift Matadors Over Titans
Oct. 20, 2011
FULLERTON, CA - Cal State Northridge's Heidi Farran scored her seventh goal of the year just over seven minutes into the match and the defense held host Cal State Fullerton to a season-low eight shots on the night as the Matadors edged the Titans, 1-0, on Thursday night at Titan Stadium.
The loss dropped Fullerton to 7-8-2 overall on the year and 1-4 in Big West Conference play despite the home team holding an 8-7 advantage in shots for the night. The Titans' previous low for shots in a match this season was nine against Pepperdine on Aug. 26 in an overtime defeat as Fullerton, which entered the night leading the league in shots, were held to single digits in that category for only the second time this season.
Northridge improved to 6-7-2 overall and 4-1-1 in conference play, winning its third in a row and claiming victory for the fourth time in its last five outings.
With just over seven minutes gone in the match, Farran found herself marked on the left side of the box as her shot didn't have a whole lot on it, but the ball trickled in on goal and dribbled off the left post and over the line to the surprise of almost everyone on the field. Melissa Fernandez and Brielle Slepicoff added assists on the goal as the Matadors took a 1-0 lead.
Turns out that was more than enough for Northridge and junior goalkeeper Cynthia Jacobo, who turned away the potential tying goal with 31 minutes to play in the second half. Fullerton's Kishi Smith found herself unmarked on the left side, but her shot was pushed away and corralled by Jacobo, who leaped for a fingertip save (her only save of the night) to preserve the shutout.
Marie Hirsch had a chance to extend the lead for the Matadors three minutes later, but her shot bent just away from the far post from the left side, and Alexis Barbara had another shot saved by Titan keeper Lindsey Maricic with 15 minutes to play to keep her side to within a goal.
Cal State Fullerton returns to the pitch on Sunday (Oct. 23) with its final road contest of the season, taking on UC Riverside at 6 p.m.