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Gauchos Get Road Win at UCLA

Box Score

Bookmark and Share Printer Friendly Feb. 21, 2009

Ashley Antoon-AlgieriLos Angeles, CA - Fifth ranked UCSB went into Westwood for a Friday night game and came away with a 9-8 come-from-behind win over the 6th ranked Bruins in the Western Women's Lacrosse League opener for both teams. The veteran UCLA squad returns 11 starters from last season while the young Gauchos return five starters from 2008. Three times did UCLA lead by three goals, including  8-5 with 20 minutes remaining in the game. To get the win UCSB had to score the last four goals of the game while not allowing the Bruins any of their own. And so they did with a rally over the final 15 minutes that eclipsed the UCLA lead and sent the Gauchos home to Santa Barbara celebrating all the way.

Senior Katie Moran (San Rafael, CA) led the Gauchos on offense with 3 goals and 1 assist. Freshman Jeni Centner (Tustin, CA) had 11 saves in 60 minutes of action to anchor the UCSB defense, including a string of 3 straight stops late in the game that kept the UCLA lead to only three goals and allowed the Gauchos to stay within striking distance. UCSB held UCLA scoreless over the final twenty minutes while scoring the needed four goals to complete a comeback in a game they led only at 1-0 in the beginning and trailed most of the time.

"It seems a little unusual to consider three goals down keeping it close enough to win it at the end," said UCSB head coach Paul Ramsey following the game, "but that's pretty much what we've been doing so far this season."

The first goal in the four goal run was a solo effort by sophomore  Ashley Antoon-Algieri (San Ramon, CA) with 17:42 left in the game. Nearly 8 minutes of scoreless action ensued with some fine stops by both goal keepers. Then junior  Samantha Lutz (San Diego, CA) fed Moran an opposite post pass that seemed too high and too hot to handle but the senior snared it and then while off balance from the reach and catch snuck it under the top cross bar.

The equalizer came on a loose ball after a UCSB shot that was scooped up by freshman Meg Cruse (San Diego, CA) with 8:58 remaining. Cruse picked it up behind the goal and  worked her way around her defender to the front of the cage and neatly put the ball past UCLA goalie Emily Beugelmans. That made it 8-8. The game winner came on an unassisted goal by sophomore  Ashley Antoon-Algieri (San Ramon, CA) with 6:06 left on the clock. It was her second goal in her 2 goal and 2 assist day.

"We can certainly turn it on when we need to during crunch time.  That's all I have to say about it for now," said Ramsey.

UCSB improves to 6-2 while UCLA drops to 2-4. The Gauchos are next in action when they face 2nd ranked Cal Poly SLO in a Thursday night game at UCSB. The Mustangs will be the 8th straight ranked opponent for the Gauchos. UCLA hosts Cal Poly SLO on Sunday in a triangle of scheduling featuring three of the top four teams in the league playing each other in a six day period.


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