EUGENE, Ore.- The Oregon Ducks women's soccer fell just short on Friday night against the Pacific Tigers, losing in a hard-fought 1-0 battle. The Tigers earn their first win of the season, advancing to 1-5-0, while the Ducks fall to 3-2-0.
"We came out and battled and worked very hard to create chances," said head coach Tara Erickson. "As the game wore on we created more and more opportunities but we just couldn't find the back of the net. Their goalkeeper made several nice saves, and we had one off the crossbar."
UO held a slight advantage in the first half in shots (8-7), but the period ended scoreless. Pacific's players were visibly hungry for their first win of the season and were giving it their all on every play. The Ducks were fighting hard as usual as well, making for a physical and grueling match.
After Pacific's Maricela Padilla scored the first and only goal of the game in the 65th minute off of a throw-in, the Ducks turned up the intensity on offense even more.
"We pushed Mariah Powers up top in the last twenty minutes to create offense and just did everything we could to create some opportunities," added coach Erickson.
Oregon managed to outshoot Pacific 6-1 in the second and got four corner kicks to the Tigers' two, but could not score. Pacific played the match with a traditional sweeper, which is a formation and style of play that the Ducks have not seen thus far in the season. Playing with a sweeper is uncommon in NCAA women's soccer, and Oregon's offensive rhythm was certainly thrown off.
The Ducks ended up outshooting the Tigers 14-8, eight of them on goal, and getting more corner kicks (4-3), but Pacific topped Oregon in saves (8-1).
Oregon travels to Moraga, Calif. on Sunday to face the Saint Mary's Gaels.