EUGENE, Ore. -- The University of Oregon soccer team took a 1-1 tie with No. 16 UCLA into the 88th minute before the Bruins scored a pair of late goals en route to a 3-1 win Friday night at Pape’ Field in Eugene.
UCLA forward Sydney Leroux scored two goals and fellow forward Zakiya Bywaters added another in leading the Bruins (9-4-1, 2-1-0 Pac-10) to the victory. Oregon fell to 4-7-2 overall and 0-2-0 in league play with the home loss.
“It was back and forth, I thought we had established ourselves in the game,” head coach Tara Erickson said. “We stuck with our game plan and had the right pieces in place. They just caught some late breaks.”
Senior midfielder Mercedes Walters registered UO’s only goal of the match, an equalizing score in the 68th minute. The scoring sequence began when senior forward Rianna Mansfield played a ball in-behind the UCLA defense. Walters held off a Bruin defender before one-timing the bouncing pass to the near post.
“We bumped her up into more of an attacking mid role,” Erickson said of Walters, who recently moved from defender to midfielder. “Mercedes used pure energy (and drive) to track that ball down. And it was perfectly slotted past the keeper rushing out at it.”
The game remained locked a 1-1 until the 88th minute when Leroux scored the second of her two goals, assisted by Bywaters. UCLA went up by two goals when Bywaters scored on a break-away in the final minute of regulation.
Sophomore midfielder Scout Libke had three shots, two on goal, to lead the Ducks statistically. Fellow sophomore midfielder Nicole Bakke and freshman forward Brynne Konkel each added two shots for UO, while Walters scored on her only shot of the night.
“We had some outstanding performances from players who haven’t seen a lot of action,” Erickson added. “Mo Fitzgerald played very well tonight – helping us to keep possession in both the front and the back. Nicole Bakke also really performed above and beyond of what I’ve seen from her in the past.”
Fitzgerald, a sophomore midfielder, was on the field for all 90 minutes on Friday. Bakke came off the bench to play 52 minutes in the midfield.
Junior goalkeeper Lindsay Parlee had seven saves in playing the full 90 minutes, one of seven Ducks to play the duration of the match. “When the moments came, Parlee did a great job. A lot came to her tonight,” Erickson said.
UCLA out-shot Oregon (15-8), while also edging the Ducks in corner kicks (4-2). Leroux led the Bruins with five shots, three of which were on target. Forward Jenna Richmond added three shots, two on goal. Goalkeeper Chante’ Sandiford had four saves and one goal allowed in 90 minutes of action.
There was only three fouls whistled in the contest, two came against the Bruins. There wasn’t a single offside violation.
“In playing for 88 minutes with UCLA, with them being a traditional power in the conference, tonight should give us confidence going into every Pac-10 match, particularly going into Sunday against USC,” Erickson said.
Oregon (4-7-2, 0-2-0 Pac-10) will face No. 19 USC (8-4-2, 1-2-0 Pac-10) on Sunday at 1 p.m. The Trojans lost 1-0 at Oregon State on Friday night.
BASKETBALL - M
BASKETBALL - W
GOLF - M
GOLF - W
TENNIS - M
TENNIS - W
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