Nov. 21, 2010

IRVINE, Calif. -

Courtesy of Washington Athletics

For just the second time in school history the UW women's soccer team is headed to the Elite 8. The Huskies (13-8-2) upset UC Irvine (19-3-2) at Anteater Stadium, 1-0 2OT, on Saturday night.

The Huskies also went to the Elite 8 in 2004 but fell to Princeton in New Jersey, 3-1. Washington is 3-0 in the NCAA Tournament this season after defeating Oklahoma in the First Round, 4-0, and No. 2 Portland 10-9 in penalty kicks after a 1-1 tie in the Second Round.

"Our team has really grown the last eight or nine games and really battled through adversity," said head coach Lesle Gallimore. "UC Irvine was exactly what I expected. They are fast and physical and tough and a difficult team to play against. We knew we had a huge challenge tonight. After a big game like we had at Portland, as a coach you always worry about a letdown but I couldn't be more proud of this team for not letting down."

The game was truly a battle as the Anteaters were in their first-ever NCAA Tournament Sweet 16 on their home field where they were 11-2 entering the match.

Washington outshot UCI 16-7 in the game, including 8-2 in the first half.

Junior goalkeeper Jorde LaFontaine-Kussmann (Lakewood, Wash.) posted another shutout, her seventh this season, while picking up her 10th win in goal, making four saves.

"I was impressed with the number of chances we created and how we defended tooth and nail," Gallimore added. "UCI was dangerous up front and we did a good job out of keeping them out of the back of our net."

Freshman Allie Beahan (Sammamish, Wash.) broke the scoreless tie in the 103rd minute in the second overtime period with her third career goal. Beahan took a pass inside the box from junior Sarah Martinez (Des Moines, Wash.) on the left side for the game-winner.

"Alex (Webber) did a really good job of running around on top tonight and Allie when she was in previously we thought did really well," said Gallimore. "She is good at holding the ball down and she can strike it with both feet and I couldn't be happier for her. She absolutely made the most of her chance tonight."

Beahan along with Martinez and senior McKenna Waitley (Coronado, Calif.) led the team with three shots each.

UC Irvine goalkeeper Danielle de Seriere made nine saves.

The Huskies will face Boston College next Saturday, Nov. 27, at 1 p.m. PST. The Eagles are 16-6-1 and reached the Elite 8 by defeating Boston U., Hofstra and West Virginia. The Huskies and Eagles have never met in women's soccer.

Washington is just one of two Pac-10 schools in the Elite 8. No. 1 overall seed Stanford will face Florida State next Friday. In the other two quarterfinal matches next Friday, Georgetown will travel to Ohio State and Oklahoma State will host Notre Dame.