Oct. 19, 2008
NORTHRIDGE, Calif. - Northridge midfielder Nancy Avesyan scored in the 88th minute to give the Matadors a 2-1 victory over the Pacific Tigers Sunday at Matador Soccer Field. The win improves the Matadors' record to 7-7-1 (2-2-0 Big West) while Pacific's record drops to 8-6-1 (3-2-1 Big West).
Leading up to the goal, Matador forward Kristal Phillips took a corner kick to step up the winning play. The ball ricocheted in front of the Pacific goal before Avesyan put her foot on the ball, giving the Matadors the lead.
"I was knocked down at first then popped back up. I came to my feet and then took a hard shot on goal, and saw the ball pass the `keeper (Pacific goalkeeper Amanda McNab)," said Avesyan.
The Matadors held on the last two minutes of the game by keeping the ball away from the Tigers front-line, and left Matador field with the victory.
"We have been through so much this season, this game showed the true spirit of this team. The girls fought the entire game and made this happen," stated Northridge Head Coach Keith West.
The game opened up with little action in the first half as both teams traded possession in the middle of the field. Even though the Tigers out shot the Matadors by an 8-1 margin, both teams left the field for halftime with a score tied 0-0.
In the second half of the game both teams came out reenergized and looking to score the first goal of the game.
Tiger defender Alex Topp put the first goal on the scoreboard in the 52nd minute after receiving a pass taken off of a free kick by Tiger defender Kylee Ah Choy. Topp headed the ball in the net just before the Matadors could clear the ball out from goalie box.
The Matadors responded in the 69th minute when Matador midfielder Tryna Tafoya was awarded a free kick right in front of the CSUN bench. Tafoya's free kick bounced around in the box and deflected off the head of Tiger defender Chelsea Gomes resulting a Matador goal.
With the game tied 1-1, both teams revved up their intensity in an effort to score the winning goal. Shortly after play resumed, Matador goalie Leah Elliott made an outstanding diving save off a header by Tiger forward Lydia Jackson.
Elliott now owns a 1.22 goals-against average and an .819 save percentage, having played every minute of the season for CSUN in net.
The score remained tied until the 88th minute when Avesyan scored the winning goal.
The Matadors hit the road for their next game on Thursday October 23 to take on UC Irvine. The game will start at 7p.m.