Photo by: Tony Leon/ActionwestPhotography.com
WHITTIER, Calif. – Playing in the nightcap following the men's contest against Claremont-M-S, the women's soccer team was unable to find the back of the net for their third consecutive game as they fell 1-0 to the Bulldogs of the University of Redlands.
The Poets orchestrated the first scoring opportunities of the contest with the first three shots forcing Bulldog keeper Lexi Felix to come up with big saves early. Two shots came from Leila Afrasiyabi (Los Angeles, Calif.) and the other came from Lauren Kai (Torrance, Calif.).
The Bulldogs responded however unleashing three of their own shots from Savannah Laursen, Tanya Haggen, and Cassie Lively forcing freshman Caitlyn Schrepfer (Placentia, Calif.) to come up with one of her seven saves on the game.
Redlands' persistence paid off however in the 35th minute from Lihini Weerasinghe when she fired off a shot inside the box that bent in off the side post by Schrepfer.
The score remained 1-0 at the half and in the second, UR continued with their offensive presence firing off another six shots.
The Poets tried to gather themselves and picked up their intensity in the second half getting off three shots, but none would get past Felix as the Bulldogs would hold on for the SCIAC victory.
Kai led the offense with four shots, while Afrasiyabi finished with two.
"Offensively we stress the importance of capitalizing on our opportunities," explained Head Coach Monica Gerardo. "The mental focus and technique has to be there – translating from training to the game. If we can get that final piece to click for us, results would be different."
"We challenged them to be mentally focused from minute one, to not back down, to take the game to them and make them adjust to us," Gerardo stated. "We came out strong from minute one and I am proud of their effort for a full 90 minutes. We learn from this and get ready for the next one."
Whittier returns to the field this Wednesday, October 1 when they travel to Thousand Oaks, Calif. to take on the Regals of Cal Lutheran University beginning at 7:00pm.