EUGENE, Ore.-The Oregon Ducks women's soccer team came out on top against the UC-Irvine Anteaters in a close match 1-0 at Pape' Field Friday night. Once again, the Ducks' freshman class shone as midfielder Maryn Beutler scored her first goal of the season in the 67th minute to win the game.
"I thought we performed very well," said head coach Tara Erickson. "Something that we talked to our team about throughout the week was just playing harder and being more physical. We thought that Irvine was going to bring a lot of physicality and a lot of size, and I thought that we not only matched their physicality but I that we were definitely, definitely a grade above where we had been in previous games."
In the first period, the Ducks held the advantage in shots (5-2), shots on goal (3-1) and corner kicks (3-2). After a physical half, however, the score was tied at 0-0. The Ducks' defense continued to bear down in the second period, as the Anteaters took eight more shots, but only managed to get one more shot on goal. Oregon, on the other hand, fired seven more shots in the period, six of them on goal.
The deciding series of events came in the 67th minute of action, as forward Achijah Berry shot from about eight feet out and gathered her own rebound off of the goalkeeper's save. Freshman Maryn Beutler immediately stepped in and got a shot off that landed in the back of the net to put the Ducks up 1-0.
"I thought that we earned that goal," added Coach Erickson. "It was a scrappy goal but a hard fought goal. Achijah berry did a great job creating that chance and a very opportunistic and a heady play by Maryn to pounce on that ball and fire it in the back of the net."
Nineteen players saw the field tonight, continuing this season's theme of a deep bench giving Oregon an advantage. The Ducks improve to 3-1-0 on the season, while the Anteaters fall to 1-4-0. A new Pape' field record crowd of 792 people was on hand to see the Ducks go 2-0 at home on the season.
"Overall, it was a very solid performance against a good Irvine team. That team is an NCAA tournament team. They haven't gotten the results they wanted to maybe this year, but they've played a heck of a schedule. To come out here and make a statement with the win tonight was great for us," said Erickson.
Oregon travels to Stockton, Calif. to face Pacific on Friday, Sept. 7th, before concluding the road trip with a trip to Moraga, Calif. to play Saint Mary's.